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Fungal Meningitis Update

The Virginia law firm of Gentry Locke Rakes & Moore, LLP has been retained to represent individuals who received tainted epidural cortisone injections (Methylprednisolone acetate) that have resulted in a rare fungal meningitis.

Steroid injections sourced from New England Compounding Center (NECC) — the apparent source of the tainted injections — appear to have been administered to hundreds of people in Virginia, in addition to other states across the nation.

An October 16th, 2012 FDA statement now reports that other injectables that were compounded at the NECC Massachusetts facility are suspected of being tainted as well; one for heart transplant patients, and a second epidural steroid (Triamcinolone acetonide). According to the FDA, NECC announced a recall of all its products on October 6, 2012.

Here are some things Gentry Locke attorneys have learned:

  1. There are two known clinics where the contaminated shots were given in Virginia: Insight Imaging (Roanoke) and New River Valley Surgical Center (Christiansburg).
  2. Symptoms associated with fungal meningitis are expected to occur within 1 week to 4 weeks following an injection.
  3. Initial symptoms may be substantially less severe than traditional meningitis (e.g., some have headache, but no fever or neck stiffness). Anyone who has received an epidural cortisone injection from either of the two facilities within the past month should be very sensitive to any of these symptoms and seek medical attention immediately if they are detected.
  4. Unlike most forms of meningitis, the reported cases involve a fungal infection. This may change the course of treatment from traditional antibiotics to antifungal agents. Therefore, while some patients may have been diagnosed with meningitis and received “treatment,” unless the source of the infection is known to be fungal, it is possible that they will not have received the correct treatment.

Please feel free to contact Scott Sexton (Sexton@gentrylocke.com) or Matt Broughton (Broughton@gentrylocke.com) if you have any questions regarding these cases.

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