On Monday, December 17, the U.S Center for Disease Control released new numbers that counted the death toll in Tennessee caused by the October meningitis outbreak at 14—including one in just the previous week. Tennessee continues to lead the country in deaths per state, with Michigan following close behind at 10. The national death toll is now at a startling 39 victims and 620 sickened people, and continuing to grow.
Our last update on this outbreak showed that there were 9 fatalities in Tennessee caused by meningitis as of last month, more than a 55% increase, and unfortunately the death toll continues to rise. These updated numbers from the CDC are up 5% from the previous week alone.
Tennessee’s total case count as of this report is at 124.
The outbreak originated from a steroid, methylprednisolone acetate, manufactured by the New England Compounding Center (NECC) in Massachussetts, which recalled the medicine in September. The steroid is typically used to imitate natural hormones and plays a key role in relieving inflammation.
In the past week, 12 new cases were reported in Tennessee alone, all of them injection site infections along the spinal column or in a peripheral joint. The Tennessee Department of Health recently released more letters and phone calls warning people that may still be at risk of fungal meningitis caused by lingering infections at the injection site. An estimated 14,000 people may be at risk for fungal meningitis caused by contaminated injections, spread throughout 23 states and 76 different facilities.
If you or someone you know have received steroid injections you believe came from the NECC and start experiencing symptoms, seek medical attention first, then contact medical malpractice attorneys at Knoxville’s Gilreath and Associates.