Health Officials have linked a rare fungal meningitis outbreak to spinal steroid injections, commonly used to treat back pain.  Seven people are confirmed dead and 91 reportedly sick.

The states with reported cases are: Tennessee, Florida, North Carolina, Indiana, Michigan, Virginia, Maryland, Minnesota and Ohio.

Unlike bacterial and viral meningitis, fungal meningitis is not transmitted from person to person and only people who received the steroid injections are thought to be at risk

Meningitis affects the membranous lining of the brain and spinal cord. Early symptoms of fungal meningitis, such as headache, fever, dizziness, nausea and slurred speech, are subtler than those of bacterial meningitis and can take nearly a month to appear. Left untreated, the inflammatory disease can cause permanent neurological damage and death.

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