NC hospital apologizes for exposure to disease

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) — A Winston-Salem hospital is apologizing after improper sterilization exposed nearly 20 patients to a rare neurological disease.

WXII-TV reports (http://bit.ly/1ocr5fk) that Novant Health Forsyth Medical Center President Jeff Lindsay issued the apology on Monday. Lindsay told a news conference that 18 patients may have been exposed to Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease following an operation that was performed on Jan. 18.

Novant vice president for clinical development Dr. Jim Lederer said the operation was performed on a patient that was suspected and later confirmed to have sporadic CJD. While CJD has been associated with mad cow disease, Lederer emphasized this particular strain isn't mad cow.

There's no known cure for CJD, which can lead to death in some cases. It could take years if not decades for other symptoms to show up.

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Information from: WXII-TV, http://www.wxii12.com

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