Two more people in Florida have been diagnosed with fungal meningitis as a result of receiving a contaminated steroid injection produced by the New England Compounding Center (NECC). NECC is responsible for over 200 fungal meningitis infections across the United States; the number of people infected continues to rise.
Warnings about possible contamination now include all of NECC's other products, including medications used in eye and heart surgeries. Some states have banned the use of NECC products entirely in the wake of the dangerous and defective drug scare prompted by the contaminated steroid.
Seventy-eight health care facilities in Florida are on record as having received some type of product from NECC, although not necessarily the steroid at the heart of the fungal meningitis outbreak.
Over 1,000 people have been individually notified of their potential for exposure to the contaminated drug by the Florida Department of Health and the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. If you were contacted about being exposed, a defective drug attorney can explain your rights against the NECC.
The most recent Floridians infected with fungal meningitis from the defective NECC products are women in their 70s who received treatment at two separate pain clinics: one in Pensacola at the Pain Consultants of West Florida and one in Ocala at the Florida Pain Clinic.
Both women are receiving intravenous anti-fungal treatments to fight the meningitis infection. The course of treatment for this non-contagious type of meningitis can last several months, requiring hospitalization for a lengthy amount of time. The infections likely could have been entirely avoided, and of course then also the treatment and hospital stays for these women, had the NECC compounded the drugs under appropriate, sterile conditions.
Source: Orlando Sentinel, "Meningitis outbreak: Health officials expand warnings of possibly tainted drugs," October 16, 2012