A total of 105 people have been diagnosed as contracting a noncontagious type of fungal meningitis due to contaminated steroid injections. As reported by CNN, patients across nine states contracted the infection after being injected in their spines with a preservative-free steroid known as methylprednisolone acetate manufactured by the New England Compounding Center (NECC).
A total of eight people have died due to the meningitis. The manufacturer has recalled three lots of the product as well as a voluntary recall of all of its other products out of caution, but the company does not believe other products have been contaminated. Officials have reported that 76 medical facilities across 23 states received shipments of the contaminated product from the NECC.
The affected medical facilities can be viewed at www.cdc.gov/hai/outbreaks/meningitis-facilities-map.html. Here is a list of the facilities in California that may contain the contaminated injections:
- Cypress Surgery Center DBA – Visalia, CA (559) 740-4094
- Encino Outpatient Surgery Center – Encino, CA (818) 986-1037
- Ukiah Valley Medical Center – Ukiah, CA (707) 463-7345
- Universal Pain Management – Palmdale, CA (661) 267-6876 x166
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has asked all doctors, consumers, and clinics to stop using NECC’s products. The FDA is currently investigating the contamination and NECC has voluntarily suspended its license to operate until the investigation is complete.
Meningitis is the inflammation of the membrane protecting the brain and spinal cord, caused by an infection of a bacteria, virus, or, in this case, fungi. Fungal meningitis can cause common meningitis symptoms such as fever, nausea, headache, and stiffness of the neck, but also unique symptoms like confusion, dizziness, or discomfort from bright light. Infected patients may only experience one or two of these symptoms, and anyone who received an injection at an affected facility on or after July 1 and has experienced symptoms should immediately seek medical attention.
At the law firm of Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley, our San Diego product liability lawyers understand the devastating effects of a defective medical drug or product. Such products can cause both unsuspected and critical trauma to a victim. For more information on your rights to compensation under California law and how we may be able to aid you, call us at 213-514-8332.