Fungal Meningitis: No Cases Reported In Cuyahoga County

Health officials are dealing with a multi-state outbreak of fungal meningitis caused by contaminated injections used for back pain.

Cuyahoga County health officials are closely monitoring the outbreak of fungal meningitis caused by contaminated injections used to treat back pain.

Right now, only one case has been reported in Ohio, and it's not in Cuyahoga County, according to the Ohio Department of Health. A 65-year-old man is sick with fungal meningitis likely caused by a contamined epidural steroid injection.

The disease cannot be passed from person to person. It is not contagious. Check out a FAQ on the disease.

Keith Brennan, a spokesman for the Cuyahoga County Board of Health, said there have been no cases in the county.

"Officially, in Cuyahoga County, we are not aware of any suspected or confirmed cases at this time," he said.

The number of confirmed cases is growing. ABC News reports that there have been 105 cases confirmed and eight deaths. Health officials said the exposure to the disease could be as high as 13,000, according to NBC News.

The contamined injections were produced in Framingham, Mass., by the New England Compounding Center. The injections were shipped to four facilities in Ohio, none in Northeast Ohio.

They are: the Marion Pain Clinic and BKC Pain Specialists, both in Marion, Ohio, Cincinnati Pain Management in Cincinnati and the Ortho-Spine Rehab Center in Dublin, Ohio.

Health officials have told doctors to be on the lookout for the symptoms of fungal meningitis.

They are similar to the symptoms of other forms of meningitis but often appear more gradually and begin very mild. In addition to typical meningitis symptoms like headache, fever, nausea, and stiffness of the neck, people with fungal meningitis may also experience confusion, dizziness, and discomfort from bright lights. Patients might just have one or two of these symptoms.

Call your doctor if you have symptoms.


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