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Rare Meningitis Outbreak Claims 11 Lives, Sickens 119 People

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Washington, DCThe national meningitis outbreak has now claimed 11 lives and sickened 119 people in 10 states. All the people affected received contaminated steroid injections, according to US health officials. A report by HealthDay News states health officials in the 23 states that received shipments of the methylprednisolone acetate are trying to track down patients who received the injections.

The drug, commonly used for back pain, may have been tainted with a fungus usually found in leaf mold. According to the Associated Press, no one knows how many injections were contaminated with the fungus, so the actual number of people at risk for this rare type of non-contagious meningitis is uncertain. However, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released a list that contains the names of 75 health care facilities that received contaminated product.

The CDC has also released a state-by-state breakdown of cases: Florida: 4 cases; Indiana: 12 cases; Maryland: 8 cases, including 1 death; Michigan: 25 cases, including 3 deaths; Minnesota: 3 cases; New Jersey: 1 case; North Carolina: 2 cases; Ohio: 1 case; Tennessee: 39 cases, including 6 deaths; Virginia: 24 cases, including 1 death.

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