Update in Mystery Illness Deaths Expected Thursday

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- Doctors throughout Alabama have gotten notices from the State Department of Health about the unidentified respiratory illness that has killed two and hospitalized five more.

The Centers for Disease Control and the Alabama State Department of Health were investigating a cluster of hospital admissions Wednesday of people that have recently been admitted with flu-like symptoms in southeastern Alabama. Three remain hospitalized and two have been released.

Dr. Mary McIntyre of the Alabama Department of Public Health said that all of the severe illnesses were accompanied by pneumonia and may have had more than one contributing factor. McIntyre says the two people that died had different, but relatively common, forms of influenza.

Further information from the CDC is expected on Thursday morning. McIntyre says obesity can complicate serious respiratory illnesses.

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