South Carolina has seen its first probable case of fungal meningitis related to steroid injections from a potentially contaminated product called methylprednisolone acetate.
Dr. Linda Bell, M.D. and Interim State Epidemiologist says, “Fungal meningitis poses no additional risk to others, as it is not transmitted from person to person.”
The state Department of Health and Environmental Control has reported one clinic received the drugs in our state. DHEC officials would not name the clinic, but the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention identified it as Intervene MD, which has offices in Mount Pleasant and North Charleston.
Dr. Bell said the New England Compounding Company in Framingham, Massachusetts, prepared the three lots of steroid injection implicated in the investigation. Nearly 14,000 persons in 23 states were exposed to the potentially contaminated steroid injection between May 21 and September 26, 2012.
Additional laboratory testing is pending to confirm the diagnosis of fungal meningitis in the S.C. patient and rule out other potential causes of meningitis. At this time, the health agency says case is considered probable.
Nationally, 317 cases of fungal meningitis have been identified to date and there have been 24 deaths. The CDC and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration are coordinating the multi-state meningitis investigation.