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2nd wave of fungal diseases emerge in tainted steroid patients

Minnesota Department of Health is urging patients who  received steroid injections from the Massachusetts pharmacy linked to an  outbreak of fungal meningitis to remain vigilant as more diseases linked to the  drugs emerge.

States across the country are seeing a second wave of  fungal sicknesses among patients who received medicines manufactured at the New  England Compounding Center.

In Minnesota, a woman in her 20s was found to have a  fungal infection inside her bones that is consistent with osteomyelitis. She is  not currently hospitalized.

This latest case marks the 13th infection in Minnesota  related to the contaminated drugs. Of the previous cases, one other Minnesota  patient also experienced a bone infection.

A number of other states have also documented cases of  infected collections of fluid, or abscesses, at the site where the contaminated  injections were administered.

In light of the newly emerging fungal illnesses, state  officials are encouraging patients who received the steroid products to remain  in close contact with their health care providers, especially if symptoms are  persisting. Providers are also being urged to include imaging tests to look for  bone infections or abscesses.

The death toll in the outbreak climbed to 32 this week,  with over 460 total cases. Michigan appears to be the hardest-hit state, with  148 cases reported so far.


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