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August 29, 2014

Meningitis outbreak grows nationally, steady in Minnesota

The outbreak of fungal meningitis has now killed eleven people around the country, while the number of cases is up to 119. The outbreak is tied to a batch of steroids from a Massachusetts lab that were injected into patients at clinics, including two in Minnesota. An executive at one of those clinics tells the Star Tribune the staff is trying to calm the fears of patients while arranging testing for those who need it.

The Minnesota Department of Health has confirmed three cases in the state. But hundreds of other people who received the steroid have reported symptoms consistent with fungal meningitis.  In some cases the symptoms are mild and could be caused by other factors.

The Health Department is maintaining a page on the outbreak. At the federal level, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are managing the outbreak.

WCCO spoke with a woman who received the steroid and was later hospitalized with what was diagnosed as a urinary tract infection.