Meningitis outbreak toll hits 119 cases, 11 deaths

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

NEW YORK -- The number of people sickened by a deadly fungal meningitis outbreak has reached 119, and 11 deaths have been reported.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated the count Tuesday.

New Jersey is the 10th state to report at least one illness.

Other states involved in the outbreak are Tennessee, Michigan, Virginia, Indiana, Florida, Maryland, Minnesota, North Carolina and Ohio.

Officials have tied the outbreak of rare fungal meningitis to steroid shots for back pain.

The steroid was made by a specialty pharmacy in Massachusetts. At least one contaminated vial was found at the company.

The company recalled the steroid that was sent to clinics in 23 states, and later recalled everything it makes.

The CDC and the Food and Drug Administration are coordinating a multistate investigation.

This form of meningitis is not contagious.

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