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A deadly meningitis outbreak has killed six people in Tennessee and sickened 39 others as of the afternoon of Oct. 9.
The epidemic is nationwide with 10 states are now reporting cases. Tennessee still leads the country in the total number of cases and deaths. Michigan is second with 25 cases and three deaths; Virginia is next with 24 cases and one death.
In all, about 1,000 Tennessee patients are believed to be at risk, but health officials have said most will not develop fungal meningitis. The attack rate is estimated at slightly less than 5 percent, said David Reagan, chief medical officer for the Tennessee Department of Health — though that number changes slightly as case analysis continues.
Patients who received epidural steroid injections for back or neck pain at Saint Thomas Outpatient Neurosurgery Center, the PCA Pain Care Center of Oak Ridge or Specialty Surgery Center in Crossville from June 27 to Sept. 28 are potentially at risk.
The Tennessean is hosting an Information Roundtable and Q&A to present these facts and others. Journalists covering the story will be on hand to answer questions directly from those affected, their families, and others interested in this story. Medical professionals, state officials and others involved in the story have been invited to the Roundtable, which will be held at the non-partisan First Amendment Center in Nashville.
The Roundtable will be broadcast digitally and recorded for those interested in tuning in from afar.
Please understand that this gathering, and the information to be discussed, is not intended to substitute for a doctor-patient relationship and does not constitute medical advice. Consult your own physician.
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TN Media is a multimedia company that publishes The Tennessean and Tennessean.com – the most complete sources of local news and information in Middle Tennessee. Products and services also serve targeted audiences and specific advertisers to meet their information and business needs, including community newspapers, magazines, niche publications and interest-based web sites as well as consumer driven print & online products for automotive, real estate and employment. TN Media is owned by the Gannett Co., Inc. – an international news and information company – and reaches more than 900,000 local adults each week. For more information, visit www.tnmedia.com