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Bad Drugs: Compounding the Problem

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Many people are aware of the multi-state outbreak of meningitis last year. What began as a few cases of meningitis became a nationwide health crisis, with 750 people sickened by contaminated compounded drugs and 64 deaths to date. What is the problem with compounded drugs? 

In many cases, a neighborhood pharmacist compounds, or puts together, the drugs ordered by your doctor to suit your specific need. Much in the same way, but on a larger scale, compounding companies have taken over production of batches of drugs delivered to hospitals and other healthcare agencies across the United States. 

In the case of the meningitis outbreak, the now-bankrupt New England Compounding Center (NECC) produced contaminated steroid products that infected patients who received spinal injections. While some patients suffered meningitis caused by fungal infection, others suffered stroke or spinal and joint infection. 

In recent months, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued alerts or recalls on products, including these actions: 

  • Health alert concerning potentially contaminated budesonide solution from the Compounding Shop in St. Petersburg, Florida
  • Voluntary recall of products from Leiters Compounding Pharmacy due to concerns about the safety and sterility of products
  • Voluntary recall of products from Park Compounding due to concerns with quality and sterility assurance. 

Compounded drugs created under less than sterile conditions lead to the outbreaks like those caused by NECC. In that case, strings of fungal matter were found suspended in vials prepared for injection. It is more than enough to make you sick. 

Talk to your doctor about drugs prescribed for you or your loved ones. Non-sterile medication is not just a mistake, it is negligence. Speak with an experienced personal injury attorney in North Carolina if the drug you took to feel better made you feel worse.

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