Meningitis Outbreak Caused by Contaminated Steroid Injections

October 16th, 2012 by Wapner Newman

Our Philadelphia and New Jersey medical malpractice attorneys closely monitored recent headlines after a fungal meningitis outbreak resulted in more than 170 reports of illness and 14 deaths across the country. The outbreak was caused by a contaminated steroid injection manufactured by the New England Compounding Center (N.E.C.C.), according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The steroid is primarily used to alleviate back pain.

If you live in Pennsylvania or New Jersey and develop fungal meningitis from a contaminated drug such as this, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your damages. Please contact the meningitis and medical malpractice attorneys at Wapner, Newman, Wigrizer, Brecher & Miller today call (800) LAW-6600 today to schedule a free initial consultation.

Public Health Emergency

The N.E.C.C. initially distributed more than 17,700 single-dose vials of the contaminated steroid to 76 clinics in 23 states including Pennsylvania and New Jersey. It is estimated that approximately 14,000 people have been exposed to the contaminated steroid.

The N.E.C.C. initiated a voluntary recall of the contaminated steroid as well as all other products manufactured at their Framingham, Mass. plant.

Fungal Meningitis Symptoms

Meningitis is a potentially fatal condition caused by an inflammation of the membrane that covers the brain and spinal cord. Fungal meningitis, which is a very rare form of the condition, has been linked to the contaminated steroid injections. It is not contagious.

While most of these steroid injections have been used to address back pain, some have also been administered to regions of the body such as the knees and ankles. It is unclear whether the injection location impacts your risk of developing fungal meningitis.

Symptoms of fungal meningitis include:

  • Neck stiffness
  • Fever
  • Severe headaches
  • Light sensitivity
  • Seizures
  • Photophobia
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness

It takes anywhere between one and four weeks for symptoms to develop, so it is likely that more meningitis cases stemming from this steroid contamination incident will surface.

If you begin experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above, contact your doctor immediately. Make sure to tell your doctor that the source of your meningitis may be fungal as fungal meningitis is treated with anti-fungal agents instead of antibiotics.

Wapner, Newman, Wigrizer, Brecher & Miller Can Help

Our Pennsylvania and New Jersey meningitis attorneys have been fighting for the rights of pharmaceutical injury victims for more than 40 years. Our product liability lawyers also have the experience and resources necessary to battle the high-powered attorneys employed by pharmaceutical companies.

Over the years, we have developed a strong track record of success, earning lucrative verdicts and settlements for many of our pharmaceutical injury clients. Our personal injury and medical malpractice lawyers will fight aggressively to protect your rights. We will not back down until you have received the compensation you deserve.

Please contact Wapner, Newman, Wigrizer, Brecher & Miller online or call (800) LAW-6600 today to schedule your free pharmaceutical injury consultation. We proudly serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey with offices in Philadelphia, West Conshohocken, Allentown, and Marlton.