LUMBERTON — Local health officials say those who have received an epidural steroid injection at Lumberton medical offices don’t have to worry about a recent outbreak of fungal meningitis that has been linked to the pain-management shot.
Southeastern Regional Medical Center, Lumberton Radiological Associates and Cape Fear Pain Treatment Center all told The Robesonian today that they are not involved in the voluntary recall of products by The New England Compounding Center, a pharmacy in Massachusetts.
“We purchase our steroid injection supplies direct from the manufacturer, so patients who have received epidural steroid injections at SRMC are not at risk from this most recent health advisory related to contaminated products,” said Eric Locklear, pharmacy director.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention posted updated figures to its website Sunday showing there are 91 confirmed cases of the rare form of fungal meningitis. The outbreak spans nine states, including North Carolina, and has killed at least seven people.
The other states where cases have been reported are: Florida; Indiana; Maryland; Michigan; Minnesota; Ohio; Tennessee; and Virginia. It is not yet known exactly how many people may have been affected, though it could affect hundreds or even thousands of people who received the steroid injections for back pain from July to September.
Meningitis is caused by the inflammation of protective membranes covering the brain and spinal cord. Fungal meningitis is not contagious unlike its more common viral and bacterial counterparts.