Meningitis case reported at East Hampton Middle School - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Meningitis case reported at East Hampton Middle School

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EAST HAMPTON, CT (WFSB) -

East Hampton School officials sent a letter home to middle school parents Wednesday regarding a meningitis case at the school.

According to the letter, a student from East Hampton Middle School was hospitalized and diagnosed with meningitis. However, the child is not suspected of having the type of meningitis that requires antibiotic treatment of close contacts.

"The school sent us a notification, so I am pretty comfortable with the way they are handling it," said parent Jose Hiaz of East Hampton.

Information and a link to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website was also included in the letter to address any concerns parents might have. The school also disinfected doors knobs and desk tops as a precaution.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website, fungal meningitis is rare infection of fluid around the spinal cord and brain. This strain comes from a contaminated steroid, which is used in injections to treat pain.

"A lot of people have been presented with meningitis, are presented with a stroke," said Dr. Robert Lyons of St. Francis Hospital.

There are 39 people in Connecticut with meningitis who were injected with that steroid, but none have become sick, officials said. Lyon said the hospital did not order any of the tainted injections.

The letter also states that the East Hampton student's case is not related in any way to the multi-state outbreak of meningitis associated with potentially contaminated steroid medications.

Interventional Spine & Sports Medicine in Middlebury received at least one shipment of the recalled medicine, according to the Connecticut Department of Public Health.

There have been 14 deaths from fungal meningitis outbreak, according to Connecticut Department of Public Health. None have died in Connecticut.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal has called a criminal investigation and more regulation of the tainted injections.

"The problem with compounding pharmacies is the Food and Drug Administration does not have control over them like other pharmacy companies," Lyons said. 

For more information, visit the Connecticut Department of Public Health website at www.ct.gov/dph or call (860) 509-7270.

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