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Fear from Fungal Meningitis Outbreak Ripples through Midwest

Our heartfelt sympathies go out to the victims and family members affected by the recent outbreak of fungal meningitis that has swept across the United States. News such as this is always frightening, but these latest stories hit close to home.

As a resident of Ohio and a native of Michigan – two states greatly impacted by the epidemic – I share in everybody’s concern over the full impact this outbreak will have down the road.

I’ll be watching closely to see the reaction of the legal and medical communities, particularly the New England Compounding Center. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration reportedly traced the outbreak to the Massachusetts-based pharmaceutical company, which has since been ordered closed.

By mid-October, 15 deaths and more than 200 cases had been reported, many throughout the Midwest. Forty-six cases had been reported in Michigan, 28 in Indiana, and numerous others in Minnesota and Ohio. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that as many as 14,000 patients were injected with the steroid, so the probability exists that we haven’t heard the last of this deadly epidemic. Of primary concern are steroid shots used to treat back pain, knee pain, ankle pain and shoulder pain.

Fungal meningitis, which is not transmitted from one person to another, shows various symptoms including fever, headache, stiff neck, nausea, photophobia and an altered mental status. Anybody concerned about treatment they’ve received that involved steroid shots should contact their medical provider immediately.

Have you or loved one been impacted by suspected medical malpractice? Contact the catastrophic personal injury and wrongful death attorneys at E.J. Leizerman & Associates at 419-243-1010.

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