WASHINGTON -- Federal
health officials are reporting the death toll from an outbreak of a rare fungal
meningitis has risen to 15.
The Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention says the outbreak has now sickened 198 people in 13
The latest state reporting
cases is Illinois. Others include Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan,
Minnesota, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.
The outbreak has been
linked to steroid shots used for back pain made by a specialty pharmacy in
Massachusetts. The medication has been recalled.
The Tennessee Department
of Health is reporting two more cases of fungal meningitis. That brings the
total to 52 cases in Tennessee.
The number of cases could
grow. Officials now say contaminated steroid injections were used from July
till September at the Saint Thomas Outpatient Neurosurgery Center in Nashville,
the Specialty Surgery Center in Crossville, and the PCA Pain Center in Oak
Illinois has been added to
the list of states impacted, and one more death has been reported in Indiana.
(The Associated Press
contributed to this report.)