USA: Meningitis wave kills 15 people

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Numerous people in the United States suffer from meningitis due to contaminated drugs

The meningitis wave in the United States caused by contaminated medicines continues to spread. A fifteenth casualty from Atlanta was reported on Saturday, according to the United States Health Department's Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The CDC and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are currently investigating the meningitis outbreak. According to the authorities, the cause of meningitis is "contaminated drugs that were injected directly into the spinal canal as painkillers". The first lawsuit has now been filed against the manufacturer of the drug contaminated with fungi, the New England Compounding Center (NECC) from Massachusetts in the northeastern United States.

Meningitis in 13 US states The current meningitis wave could become one of the biggest health scandals in the United States in recent years. The drug was delivered in 23 states, and people in 13 states already developed meningitis after an appropriate injection. The experts estimate that tens of thousands of people could be affected overall. Since meningitis only occurs one to four weeks after the drug is administered, a further increase in the number of people affected can be expected despite the recall of the potentially contaminated drugs.

See a doctor for meningitis symptoms. US health officials have asked doctors to contact patients who have been treated with the potentially contaminated drug in recent months. According to the CDC, patients should also be particularly attentive and if there are signs of meningitis such as fever, headache, neck stiffness, nausea and vomiting, consult a doctor urgently. “Symptoms such as confusion, dizziness and discomfort with bright lights” should also be seen as possible indications of fungal meningitis. Fortunately, the meningitis caused by fungi is not contagious.

First lawsuit for damages against the manufacturer of the contaminated drugs The first lawsuit has now been filed against the manufacturer of the contaminated drugs, reports the news channel "CNN". Minnesota applicant Barbe Puro received a contaminated batch of the steroid pain reliever in September and subsequently developed meningitis. Now Puro has sued for an undetermined amount of damages, also to obtain a precedent in the interests of all those affected. The pharmaceutical company could face a wave of lawsuits that would result in massive compensation payments. In the meantime, initial allegations are being made that are criticizing the production processes at NECC considerably. Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick accused the company of misleading regulators and acting outside of its license. (fp)

Read on:
Further fatalities from meningitis wave
Fatal outbreak of meningitis in the United States

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