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Davidson County resident dies from complications of meningitis

DENTON, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina health officials say a Davidson County resident has died from complications of fungal meningitis she likely contracted from a tainted steroid injection in her back.

State Health Director Laura Gerald said Friday’s death was the first in North Carolina from the outbreak that began when a Massachusetts compounding pharmacy shipped contaminated medication in August.

Gerald says one other meningitis case has been found in the state, and that person is recovering out of the hospital. Twenty-three people have died and nearly 300 have been sickened across the nation.

Gerald wouldn’t identify the North Carolina case, but her family identified her as 77-year-old Elwina Shaw of Denton. They told reporters she was sick with debilitating headaches for more than a month before health officials realized what was wrong.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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