FDA Blames Tennessee Pharmacy For Current Meningitis Outbreak

Jun 7, 2013

The Main Street Family Pharmacy in Newbern, Tenn. / Tom Wilemon / File / The Tennessean

Officials with the US Food and Drug Administration announced yesterday that a Tennessee pharmacy is responsible for a new outbreak of meningitis. The agency reports that both bacterial and fungal contaminants were found in unopened vials of methylprednisolone acetate made by Main Street Family Pharmacy in Newbern, Tennessee. The drugs have sickened 24 people so far, in Illinois, North Carolina, Florida and Arkansas. The pharmacy shipped the medicine to 17 states. The drug is used as a treatment for chronic pain in the spine and joints and is the same medicine made by the former New England Compounding Center that has sickened 745 people and killed 58 people, nationwide. The latest outbreak was announced May 24th; most cases are infections at the injection-site, which are less serious than meningitis. No cases have been reported in Tennessee, but federal and state health officials are closely monitoring the situation.