Friday, January 25, 2008

Urgent Bulletin to Neurologists about patients working with the heads of pigs!

The CDC has sent out an urgent notice to be on the lookout for patients who work in pig processing plants complaining of pain, numbness, and tingling in the extremities. In the fall of 2007, clinicians at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota notified the Minnesota Department of Health of an unusual cluster of 12 patients with inflammatory neuropathy among workers at a pork processing plant in Minnesota. An initial investigation has revealed that they all have worked in the same area of the plant where the heads of the pig are processed. Additional patients have been identified in Indiana, among workers in a similar plant. At this point an etiologic agent has not been identified.
The CDC bulletin reads: “neurologists who have diagnosed patients with peripheral neuropathy, myelopathy, or a mixed clinical presentation of peripheral / central (and, more specifically, myelopathic) involvement in persons with exposure to pig butchering or processing during the past year are asked to report this information to their state health department, and contact the CDC at 770-488-7100.”

4 comments:

Agent 86 said...

b,
As you may know, I'd virtually sealed the deal at Little Rock (due in large part to Bob Mrak's enthusiasm) when the weight of the exec committee descended upon me. Apart from personal feelings expressed, the point was made that international travelers have difficulty accessing some of these less well served areas. The success of meetings has often depended (at least in part) on the organizational skills and interest of the local neuropathologist. I don't know who would be the point person in LR, as Bob's now in Toledo (which isn't on the list ;])

jd said...

Spending $269/night + 14% tax for one of these big-city, tourist-heavy hotels is getting a bit old now. Little Rock would have been perfect because of 1) less-expensive hotels, 2) great food like local barbeque, Waffle House, and CiCi's Pizza, 3) lots of country music on the radio, and 4) it would weed out all of those who might attend for reasons other than the meeting.

Toledo would be fine with me! Does it have a Waffle House? "At a bar in Toledo, across from the depot, at a bar stool she took off her ring..."

jd said...

In terms of international travelers having difficulty accessing less well-served areas, I don't see how it would be any different from someone domestically. You take a plane to some big airport like Dallas and then take a connector to Little Rock. I know for sure that Little Rock has an airport because I watched an "Air Emergency" on the National Geographic Channel that featured a flight from Dallas to Little Rock skidding off the runway in a severe thunderstorm, killing 10. There haven't been any other bad incidents at Little Rock that I'm aware of.

Brian E. Moore, MD said...

The other advantage to a place like Little Rock is that it is a venue that can host a smaller meeting like that of the AANP. Most of the meeting I go to (College of American Pathologists, Amercian Academy of Neurology, etc.) have to be in big cities like Chicago in order to accomadate all of the attendees. The AANP doesn't have that limitation, so it can choose places where people wouldn't normally go, and provide a change from the usual destination. Little Rock rocks!!!!!! Toledo would work too. Or, Austin, Texas. These are all places I'd like to visit but would never do so on my own or in connection with a more mainstream meeting.