CDC releases West Nile update for November 14

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released an update on Wednesday reporting the number of West Nile virus infections throughout the nation.

As of Wednesday, 48 states reported infections of West Nile virus in people, mosquitoes or birds. A total of 5,128 human cases have been reported to the CDC, including 229 deaths.

Approximately 51 percent of the cases were classified as neuroinvasive disease, including encephalitis and meningitis. The other 49 percent of cases were classified as non-neuroinvasive disease.

The total number of cases reported thus far in 2012 represents the highest number of West Nile virus cases reported in the U.S. through the middle of November since 2003.

Nearly 80 percent of the cases were reported from 12 states, including Ohio, Arizona, Colorado, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Michigan, South Dakota, Illinois, Mississippi, Louisiana, California and Texas.

More than one-third of all cases were reported from Texas, with 771 neuroinvasive cases and 926 non-neuroinvasive cases. The state reported 76 deaths and 58 presumptive cases of presumptive viremic blood donations.

Neuroinvasive cases of West Nile virus refer to severe cases of disease that affect the nervous system by causing an inflammation of the brain or an inflammation of the membrane around the spinal cord and the brain. Non-neuroinvasive cases of West Nile are typically less severe.