Summer heat played a role in the death of a Baltimore County man under the age of 45 earlier this summer, state health officials have confirmed.
The man is the youngest to have died of heat-related causes in Maryland so far this year. He brings the tally of heat-related fatalities to 41 for the year, the deadliest since 2005. His death was included in a weekly report state health officials released late Tuesday.
The state Office of the Chief Medical Examiner is responsible for confirming deaths as heat-related. Reports on autopsies it conducts are not available to the public until two to three months after they are performed, and autopsies are not performed on all deaths the office evaluates.
Dr. David Fowler, who heads the office, has said heat-related deaths typically involve people with underlying medical conditions such as heart or lung disease or diabetes. About 60 percent of those who have died of heat-related illnesses in Maryland this year have been age 65 or older.
Monique Lyle, a spokeswoman for the county health department, did not immediately have more information about the death. The department receives notification of confirmed heat-related deaths from the medical examiner's office, but there is typically some lag time, she said.