A hospital in North Carolina exposed nearly 20 patients to an incurable brain disease after failing to properly sterilize surgical equipment, according to a recent USA Today article.

Novant Health Forsyth Medical Center in Winston-Salem apologized after exposing 18 neurosurgical patients to Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD), a degenerative fatal neurological disorder, after operating on a patient later confirmed to have the disease.

While the surgical equipment had been cleaned using typical sterilization procedures, they did not receive the enhanced procedures required for CJD.

It could take years if not decades for symptoms of the disease to show up, and there is no known cure. The disease has been associated with mad cow disease, although not the particular strain involved in this case.

“We recognize that the risk to the patients is very small,” said Jeff Lindsay, the hospital’s president. “However, we take any potential exposure seriously.” Read the full details here:

20 exposed to incurable brain disease in N.C. hospital

This is a tragic story about the lack of sterilization at a hospital affecting many people. This clear negligence may cause brain damage and wrongful death.

If you have been injured due to medical malpractice, including surgical errors, please call to investigate your matter fully. Crandall & Pera Law is available to help answer your questions and guide you in determining your next steps.