Fungal Meningitis In The United States
Fungal meningitis is non-contagious but according to the report of Central for Disease Control or CDC there are already seven victims who died from this disease. Fungal meningitis is caused by the contaminated steroid injections that came from New England Compounding Center (NECC), a Massachusetts based pharmacy. A steroid is prescribed by doctors to treat inflammation and pain.
What are the actions of governments in the United States for the rare fungal meningitis? Here are the precautions being made:
The Food and Drug Administration has now advised all consumers, doctors, and clinics to stop using the products of NECC pharmacy for safety reasons. This is in line with the rising numbers of affected patients who according to the last report, scored at 91 with 7 victims dead.
The Federal health inspectors are now investigating the plant and it was confirmed that one of the tested vials was contaminated by fungus.
How widespread is the affected area?
According to CDC, 76 medical facilities in 23 states are affected by the contaminated steroid injection. The list of medical facilities can be seen on the CDC's official website. Some of the reported victims are from Tennessee, Maryland, Virginia, Michigan, Minnesota, Florida, Ohio, and North Carolina.
What are the symptoms of fungal meningitis?
Like other meningitis, the symptoms are the same. The only difference is the symptoms in fungal meningitis appear more gradual and may seem as very mild from the start. The fact is it isn't simple as fungal meningitis could clot our blood vessels and may cause small stroke. A person infected by fungal meningitis may feel so confused, headache, fever, and nausea.
How is it being cured?
A patient may receive an anti-fungal medication intravenously and need to be hospitalized for treatment for months until the condition get fine. It is important to report your health condition at an early stage to ensure the chances of surviving from this disease.
Only 10% of the drugs in the United States came from compound pharmacies like NECC. The state health pharmacy boards are the responsible for the issuance of license for these pharmacies as well as the overseeing. That is the normal practice and there is no need to pass it through FDA. Thus we can say that NECC's fault is also partly fault by the state health pharmacy boards. The good thing is that NECC is very cooperative and they voluntarily surrendered its license to operate until the investigation of FDA is over.