Meningitis outbreak: 13,000 get steroid shots

Meningitis outbreak: 13,000 get steroid shots

NEW YORK - The Associated Press
As many as 13,000 people received steroid shots suspected in a national meningitis outbreak, health officials said Oct. 8. But it’s not clear how many are in danger.

Officials don’t how many of the shots may have been contaminated with meningitis-causing fungus. And the figure includes not only those who got them in the back for pain but also those who got the shots in other places.

There was no breakdown on the number of back injections, said Curtis Allen, a spokesman for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Those injected in joints are not believed to be at risk for meningitis, he said. The number of people sickened in the outbreak reached 105 on Oct. 8.

Menengitis in Italian cruise

Meanwhile, doctors distributed antibiotics to passengers aboard an Italian cruise ship after four crew members were diagnosed with bacterial meningitis, Italy’s health ministry reported Oct. 8.

All four were taken to hospitals after the crew of the MSC Orchestra reported the illnesses. More than 2,800 doses of the antibiotics ciprofloxacin and rifampicin were issued for passengers, and the ministry said passengers who have disembarked in the past week should take similar precautions.