Maryland reports first death from West Nile

The first recorded death from West Nile virus in Maryland this year was recently reported, according to health official's from the state.

Dori Henry of the Maryland health department said that they will not be releasing details on the death. The state has seen 13 cases of West Nile so far this year. Last year, 19 cases were reported, and in 2010, 23 cases were reported, according to USA Today.

In Michigan, the death of an 87-year-old woman from Kent County marked the fifth death from West Nile virus in the state this year.

State Department of Community Health spokeswoman Angela Minicuci confirmed the death on Thursday, USA Today reports.

On Wednesday, federal officials announced that, nationwide, West Nile cases are up 40 percent since last week and may rival records set in 2002 and 2003.

West Nile is spread through mosquitoes, who get the virus from feeding on infected birds and spread it when feeding on humans. Officials believe an early spring and hot summer may have resulted in ideal conditions for mosquito survival.

Symptoms of West Nile include fever, headache and body aches, though most people get better in a few days.

West Nile Virus is believed to have emerged as a distinct virus approximately 1000 years ago.