Back pain and meningitis don't mix

Posted By John Coletti || 8-Oct-2012

When you get prescription medication, whether it is from your pharmacy or administered by your doctor, you trust that it is safe and will cure or help whatever ails you. Well, perhaps thousands of people are probably pretty bummed out right now if they got steroid injections for back pain this year between July and September.

The New England Compounding Center in Massachusetts distributed steroid shots that were contaminated and that have been linked to an outbreak of a rare form of fungal meningitis. Thus far at least seven of the nearly 100 confirmed patients have died, and nine states have been affected, including Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, and Virginia.

The compounding center issued a voluntary recall of all of its products, even though only the steroid injections have been found to be contaminated so far. The number of people affected is unknown. Speculations are anywhere from hundreds to thousands of people.