Meningitis kills Michigan woman after injection

The family of a southern Michigan woman said Thursday they believe she died of fungal meningitis after receiving two injections of a tainted back pain medication at a northern Indiana clinic.
AP Wire
Oct 12, 2012

Pauline Burema, 89, of Cassopolis died Wednesday at a daughter's home in Bristol, Ind., said the woman's granddaughter, Lisa Ann Durbin.

The family was awaiting autopsy results to confirm the cause of death, Durbin said. However, doctors told the family they think Burema had contracted fungal meningitis from shots she received Aug. 22 and Sept. 8 at OSMC Outpatient Surgery Center in Elkhart.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed an Indiana fungal meningitis death Thursday.

Angela Minicuci, a spokeswoman at the Michigan Department of Community Health, said a Cass County resident died of fungal meningitis after being treated for back pain in Indiana. Cassopolis is in Cass County.

Burema was found unconscious Oct. 3 in her home about 15 miles north of Elkhart, Durbin said. She had seen her doctor just two days earlier.

"She was in perfect health," said Durbin, who lives in Decatur. "She was getting ready to go to New Mexico for the balloon festival."

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