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Thursday, May 30, 2013
Relapse of Fungal Meningitis Seen Months Later
Reports today about ongoing medical issues with recalled steroid injections and fungal meningitis:
An 80-year-old Virginia man, discharged after more than 4 months of therapy, relapsed and needed additional treatment less than a month after discharge, according to Rachel Smith, MD, of the CDC, and colleagues at the agency and in Virginia.
The case illustrates the possibility of relapse despite lengthy therapy and resolution of signs and symptoms, Smith and colleagues reported online in the New England Journal of Medicine.
On the other hand, they noted, the CDC knows of similar patients who have not relapsed after stopping antifungal therapy but "the risk of relapse should be considered" when doctors decide to discontinue treatment.
The outbreak started in late September, 2012, when Tennessee doctors began treating a man for an unusual form of meningitis that did not seem to have a bacterial or viral cause.
Eventually, they found evidence of a fungal infection -- with the mold Aspergillus fumigatus -- and notified the state's public health authorities.