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Fourth West Nile death in DuPage

Updated: October 29, 2012 6:44AM



Two days in a row this week, the DuPage County Health Department announced that a county resident has died from the West Nile virus. The overall tally for DuPage climbed Thursday to 31 human cases, four of which have ended in fatalities.

Because of privacy laws, public health agencies release few details about the illnesses. However, the Wheaton department reports that the cases in DuPage have involved residents of Naperville in addition to Addison, Bensenville, Bloomingdale, Carol Stream, Downers Grove, Elmhurst, Glyn Ellyn, Hinsdale, Lisle, Lombard, Villa Park and Westmont.

Only one other Illinois county has reported a death from the mosquito-borne illness this year. A 64-year-old Elgin man passed away from complications of the virus in mid-August.

“There is no definitive explanation for the number of DuPage County deaths in relation to the statewide total, but it may be greater access to care and increased awareness among patients and clinicians,” Health Department spokesman David Hass wrote in an email.

Statewide, the case total stood at 138 on Thursday.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its weekly surveillance data Tuesday, reporting the nationwide total at 3,545 cases, including 147 deaths.

General information about the age, gender and county location of West Nile infections in Illinois can be found at www.idph.state.il.us/envhealth/wnvsurveillance_humancases_12.htm.

The CDC’s weekly updates, broken down by state, can be found at www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dvbid/westnile/surv&controlCaseCount12_detailed.htm.

Will County

A Crest Hill man in his early 70s and a Crete woman in her early 40s were added to Will County’s West Nile virus case count early Wednesday.

The Illinois Department of Public Health lists seven confirmed human cases from Will County, including two from Crest Hill.

Other infections have been confirmed from Joliet, Homer Glen, Bolingbrook and Romeoville.

The Crest Hill man was hospitalized Sept. 9, after reporting fever and an altered mental state. He was discharged Sept. 14, and his diagnosis reads West Nile encephalitis.

Diagnosed with West Nile fever, the Crete woman sought medical help after experiencing fever, nasal congestion, fatigue, headaches, vomiting, and a rash. Her diagnosis was received Sept. 25.



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