The number of patients exposed to a rare and potentally fatal brain disease is rising.

Hospitals in Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Hampshire have warned 15 patients they are at risk of getting Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease after undergoing surgery where contaminated equipment was used. 

The surgical instruments may have been infected after they were used on a patient now suspected of having carried the disease. 

Health officials say the risk to the patients is extremely low and that there is no risk to the general public. (Associated Press)