What began as a constellation of seemingly isolated cases of deadly infections has become a raging nationwide outbreak of a rare fungal meningitis linked to contaminated epidural steroid injections. The disease continues to spread, and the latest numbers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control are staggering: 510 illnesses from fungal meningitis and peripheral joint infections, 36 deaths. Cases have occurred in multiple states: Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia. The disease has apparently claimed one life in North Carolina.
Massachusetts-based New England Compounding Center’s epidural steroid injections– contaminated with Exserohilum rostratum, a black mold– were implicated in the multi-state outbreak of fungal meningitis. In September, the NECC recalled 17,000 vials of methylprednilosone steroid injections and in October it voluntarily surrendered its license and recalled the remainder of its products on the market. Approximately 50 meningitis lawsuits have since been filed against the compounding company on behalf of those individuals sickened by the steroid injections. The NECC supported a plaintiff petition for the consolidation of all federally-filed claims, but requested the Massachusetts rather than the Minnesota federal court as the venue for the proceedings. What’s more, the U.S. District Judge F. Dennis Saylor agreed to freeze $5 million in NECC’s assets in response to the plaintiffs’ request claiming the company and its owners could conceal assets in order to avoid judgment in the growing number of lawsuits.
If you have contracted fungal meningitis or an infection from an epidural steroid injection, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, disintegration of health, lost wages, pain, suffering, and more. To learn more about filing a meningitis lawsuit, contact Ward Black Law today for a free case evaluation and answers to your questions.
Be sure to keep up to date and informed about the issues that matter. The following list of some recent news article about the fungal meningitis outbreak are intended to be helpful and informative, but Ward Black Law is not responsible for outdated or inaccurate content on third-party sites.
11/27/12 – Meningitis Outbreak Deaths Increases to 36 – Fox News Latino
11/27/12 – Meningitis Lawsuit Update: Federal Judge Freezes Some NECC Assets, as Fungal Meningitis and Other Infections Linked to Epidural Steroid Injections Exceed 500 – San Francisco Chronicle
11/5/12 – Previous fungal meningitis outbreak a decade ago resulted in no oversight changes – The Washington Post
*Dr. Michael Carome: http://www.cnn.com/2012/10/16/opinion/carome-meningitis/index.html