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Update on the meningitis outbreak - 12 News KBMT and K-JAC. News, Weather and Sports for SE Texas

Update on the meningitis outbreak

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The national fungal meningitis outbreak has taken a total of 12 lives, with 120 reported cases of the disease.

The outbreak is linked to contaminated steroid injections and Texas is one of the 23 states that received the contaminated product.

"I'm definitely concerned about it, I think everyone should be concerned about it," said one Vidor resident.

Because Joanna Ledger needs steroid injections for back pain it scared her to hear that two clinics in the North Texas area were found to have the contaminated medication.

"That did draw more of an alarm to me," said Ledger

Area doctors tell us the meningitis outbreak isn't even an issue in Southeast Texas because according to the Center of Disease Control none of the recalled products were sent here.

"Keeping yourself informed you're less likely to be afraid," said Dr. Orlando Schaening.

Dr. Schaening is an infectious disease specialist at Christus Hospital St. Elizabeth and says Southeast Texans have no reason to worry but should know the symptoms.

"Severe headaches, fever, stiff neck or neck pain, nausea and vomits," said Dr. Schaening. "And some people experience numbness or weakness of the lower extremities."

Although some of these symptoms may sound like the flu, if you get a check up doctors will know the difference and ledger isn't taking any chances with her health.

"If I do have any kinds of symptoms I will be at the hospital most definitely," said Ledger.

And if you have any questions the best thing to do is call the facility where you got the shot and your doctor will clear up any worries you may have.

In most cases it takes one to four weeks after the injection for symptoms to show up.

Meningitis is not contagious and can be treated if caught early.

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