Belleville hospital says some patients took drugs linked to deadly meningits outbreak

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by KMOV.com staff

KMOV.com

Posted on October 23, 2012 at 4:29 PM

Updated Friday, Nov 8 at 5:55 AM

BELLEVILLE, Ill. (KMOV) -- Some Belleville hospital patients are learning they might have been exposed to medication linked to a deadly meningitis outbreak that left 23 people dead and 297 others sick.

The Food and Drug Administration posted a list of more than 1,200 hospitals and clinics with steroids and drugs from the New England Compounding Company, or NECC, a Massachusetts pharmacy linked the deadly outbreak of fungal meningitis.

St. Elizabeth’s in Belleville found since May, 26 of its patients have received a dose of a solution that was produced by NECC.

The hospital stresses there is no evidence its patients received any contaminated solution, but its is contacting patients as a precaution. Eye Care Management in Belleville and Swansea, and the Monroe County Surgical Center in Waterloo also received medication that was manufactured by NECC. All named companies have quarantined medication for analysis.

Cases have been reported in 16 states, including Illinois. There have been no cases reported yet in Missouri.

The outbreak was originally linked to steroid shots for back pain. But now the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control have extended their investigation to other drugs produced by the company.

Fungal meningitis symptoms include fever, headache, stiff neck, sensitivity to light, numbness or slurred speech.

 

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