A pain-reducing steroid shot contaminated with fungus has been blamed for at least 200 cases of meningitis in the United States.
The outbreak of this deadly disease led the manufacturer of the steroid, the New England Compounding Center, to halt all operations amid an investigation, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention told doctors across the country not to administer any of the company’s products to patients.
The cases span at least 14 states. By mid-October 2012, at least 15 people had died after being stricken with meningitis linked to a shot of methylprednisolone acetate, a steroid injected into the spine to relieve pain. A class-action lawsuit has already been filed by Minnesota residents who feel ill after receiving a shot, and more are likely to follow.
How Do I Know if I Received a Shot Made by the New England Compounding Center?
Injections that are potentially contaminated were first given on May 21, 2012, according to the CDC. The product was shipped to 75 healthcare facilities in 23 states, allegedly in violation of the company’s licensing, which allows it only to fill individual prescriptions, not sell drugs in bulk.
Doctors have been advised to contact all patients who received a steroid shot that may have been compromised. If you suspect you’ve received one of the tainted shots, you need to see a doctor to check for symptoms of meningitis. They may take more than a month after the injection to surface.
What Are The Signs of Meningitis?
Meningitis is an infection of the brain or spine which comes in several forms. The type linked to the contaminated steroid shot is fungal meningitis, which is rarely found and is not contagious from person to person like some types of meningitis.
Symptoms typically progress slowly. They include:
● nausea or vomiting
● stiff neck
● sensitivity to light
● altered mental status
In some cases, symptoms are minor. However, if left untreated, the infection can lead to stroke or death. People with weakened immune systems are particularly at risk of serious consequences if they contract meningitis.
The Oshman Firm has a proven track record of taking on companies that make and sell drugs which harm or kill patients. Our experienced attorneys fight for you, and it’s a responsibility we take seriously.
If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with meningitis linked to a steroid shot made by the New England Compounding Center, contact our office now for a free consultation. Our attorneys will listen to your story and discuss your legal options with you. Compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages and suffering may be available.