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No Outbreak of Fungal Meningitis in Arkansas (Health Dept., October 10 2012)

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  • No Outbreak of Fungal Meningitis in Arkansas (Health Dept., October 10 2012)

    [Source: Arkansas Department of Health, full page: (LINK). Edited.]
    Wednesday, Oct 10, 2012

    No Outbreak of Fungal Meningitis in Arkansas



    Little Rock -- A multi-state investigation of cases of fungal meningitis in at least 10 states is being conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), but no cases have been reported in Arkansas so far.

    This outbreak has been linked to patients who received an epidural steroid injection with a potentially contaminated product.

    None of the injectable steroids were shipped to Arkansas pharmacies, according to the CDC. At this time it does not appear that any Arkansans have been exposed to this product.

    CDC is investigating medications produced by the New England Compounding Center (NECC) which have been associated with this outbreak. The affected lots of medication have been recalled by NECC.

    The meningitis cases are among persons who have received an epidural steroid injection (medication injected into the spine). Several of these patients have had strokes related to their meningitis. In several patients, the meningitis was found to be caused by a fungus that is common in the environment but rarely causes meningitis. These forms of meningitis are not contagious.

    The epidural steroid medication associated with this outbreak is not the same type of medication that is given to women during child birth.

    The Arkansas Department of Health will remain in contact with the CDC and the surrounding states’ health departments throughout the investigation and will issue further advisories as necessary.


    Contact: Office of Health Communications and Marketing, Ed Barham, 501-280-4147
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  • #2
    Re: No Outbreak of Fungal Meningitis in Arkansas (Health Dept., October 10 2012)

    Wednesday, Oct 17, 2012

    Investigation of Fungal Meningitis Cases Expanded

    Little Rock -- The recent multi-state investigation into an outbreak of fungal meningitis has been expanded to include all products manufactured by a single compounding pharmacy, New England Compounding Center (NECC), in Massachusetts. Some of those products were shipped to hospitals in Arkansas.

    The Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) is in close contact with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to identify all those products and the hospitals to which they have been sent, in order to assure that the products have been removed from the shelves.

    According to Nate Smith, MD, ADH deputy director and state epidemiologist, these actions are being taken as a precautionary measure.

    “Right now, we don’t have any clear association with any human illnesses, but the FDA is taking action out of concern that there could be additional infections,” Smith said.

    ADH is contacting the hospitals that have received any of the injectable or implantable compounds to be sure that they are not used.

    The cases of meningitis that have been identified as part of the multi-state outbreak investigation were found to be caused by fungi that are common in the environment but rarely cause meningitis. This form of meningitis is not contagious.


    Contact: Office of Health Communications and Marketing
    Ed Barham, 501-280-4147

    http://www.arkansas.gov/health/newsr...=1&news_id=755
    "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
    -Nelson Mandela

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