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Meningitis outbreak claims 2 more Michigan victims

A Wayne County woman who lived in an extended care facility is among two new cases of deaths related to the fungal meningitis outbreak.

The woman, 64, died Oct. 26, said Mary Mazur, spokeswoman for the Wayne County Department of Public Health.

The Michigan Department of Community Health today reported the two new Michigan deaths, which also included a woman, 81, of Charlevoix County. That brings to eight the total number of Michigan residents who have died, including one woman who received treatments in Indiana.

The outbreak is linked to tainted steroid injections tracked to 17,000 vials of preservative-free methylprednisolone acetate from the New England Compounding Center in Massachusetts.

Mazur said the Wayne County received an injection. She is the first Wayne County person to die as a result of the outbreak.

As of today, Michigan had 93 reported cases of illnesses linked to the steroid. In addition to 61 cases of meningitis, Michigan reports one stroke, four joint infections and 27 abscesses.

The Michigan Department of Community Health has contacted 1,900 people who were given the suspect injections at four Michigan clinics. Michigan Pain Specialists said it treated about 875 people with the steroid between Aug. 7 and Oct. 2.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that nationwide, there have been 363 illnesses and 28 deaths in 19 states.

Source: Detroit Free Press @ http://www.freep.com/article/20121030/NEWS06/121030072/Michigan-meningitis-outbreak-2-more-deaths

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