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West Nile: State affirms third death

Michigan has 47 confirmed cases

August 25, 2012
Associated Press

DETROIT (AP) - An 84-year-old Texas man visiting family in the Detroit area died from West Nile virus, the third death in the state this year, officials said Friday.

Although Texas has hundreds of West Nile cases, the man likely got the illness while in Wayne County, said Angela Minicuci, spokeswoman at the Michigan Department of Community Health.

He died in mid-August, but a name and other details were not released.

Michigan has confirmed at least 47 cases of West Nile, including the three deaths. The majority have been in Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties. Separately, the virus has been detected in the blood of 22 blood donors.

"Only one in five people actually experience any symptoms," Minicuci said. "(The) majority of the population can have the virus and their system will fight it off."

Mosquitoes pick up the virus from birds they bite and then pass it to people. In its most severe form, the virus can attack the body's neurological system.

Experts advise people to get rid of standing water, use bug repellant and wear long sleeves and long pants in the evening.



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