US, Costa Rica report deaths tied to outbreak
SEATTLE - A Washington state man with underlying heart conditions became the third person infected with swine flu to die in the United States, health officials said yesterday, while Costa Rica reported the first swine flu death outside North America.
Japanese authorities, meanwhile, scrambled to limit contact with their country's first cases, and Australia and Norway joined the list of nations with confirmed cases of swine flu.
A Snohomish County man in his 30s died Thursday from what appeared to be complications from swine flu, the state Department of Health said in a release. The man had underlying heart conditions and viral pneumonia at the time of his death, but swine flu was considered a factor in his death, the statement said.
The man, who was not identified, reportedly began showing symptoms on April 30.
His death and the death of a 53-year-old man in Costa Rica yesterday brings the global death toll to 53, including 48 in Mexico, three in the United States, and one in Canada.
Like other deaths outside Mexico, the Costa Rican man suffered from complicating illnesses, including diabetes and chronic lung disease, the Health Ministry said.
Previously, US authorities reported swine flu deaths of a toddler with a heart defect and a woman with rheumatoid arthritis, and Canadian officials said the woman who died there also had other health problems but gave no details.