In September 2012 there was an outbreak of fungal meningitis caused by contaminated batches of a steroid made by the New England Compounding Center in Framingham, Mass which was used to inject near the spine to treat chronic back pain. 620 people in 19 states have become ill, most with spinal meningitis. 39 people died.
On December 22, 2012 it was reported in the NY Times that people could be harboring infection in their spines now even though they may not have symtoms. Some doctors recommend that patients exposed to the contaminated drug should have an MRI of the injection site to look for abscesses and other signs of infection. Untreated, the infection can damage nerves and bone, and the fungus might cause meningitis. Treatment involves use of a long course of antifungal drugs, which can have dangerous side effects, including damage to the liver and kidney.
If you have had an injection of steroid from a batch found to have been contaminated you should consult your doctor about having an MRI even if you do not feel ill.
Weisfuse & Weisfuse LLP represents people who suffer serious injury due to defective drugs. For a free consultation call us at 212 983 3000; see our website: Weisfuselaw.com.