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Meningitis Scare: 650 in NJ Receive Linked Steroid

New Jersey officials have revised downward to 650 the number of patients in the state who received epidural injections of a steroid linked to a deadly outbreak of fungal meningitis.

Health officials had first put the number at 1,000. But they say that figure was based on the number of potentially contaminated doses that were shipped to New Jersey. Some patients, it turned out, received multiple doses.

The state Health Department said Monday that so far, no cases of fungal meningitis have been reported in New Jersey.

The number of people reported sickened in the outbreak in nine other states has topped 100 — with eight deaths recorded.

The steroid tied to the illness was made by a specialty pharmacy in Massachusetts and shipped to 23 states.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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