Three more Oklahomans have died from West Nile virus, according to state Health Department figures released Thursday.
Two Oklahoma County residents — a man older than 80 and a woman older than 60 — and an Ellis County man older than 80 have died from complications related to West Nile virus, bringing the state's total number of West Nile deaths to five this year.
Also, 38 people have been sickened by the virus, with 25 of them hospitalized.
By this time last year, the state Health Department had confirmed 155 cases of West Nile virus and nine deaths in Oklahoma.
>>Read: More Oklahomans have West Nile than what's reported (published Sept. 26, 2013)
West Nile virus is thought to be cyclical, with the number of cases peaking every three to four years. Oklahoma has seen some of that pattern in outbreaks, with the highest number of West Nile cases reported in 2003, 2007 and 2012. From 2008 to 2011, the state reported 20 cases and one death.
>>Read: What's it like: To contract West Nile (Published Aug. 11, 2013)