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Mystery Disease Kills 17 in Panama

Panama's health ministry says the death toll from a mystery illness has risen to 17.

Officials said Wednesday that two more people suffering from the condition died. They say the unidentified disease attacks the kidneys and causes neurological damage.

All the dead were over 60-years-old, and were already suffering from high blood pressure, diabetes and kidney problems.

Panama has declared a national epidemic alert, but the health ministry says the illness does not appear to be contagious.

Ten other Panamanians are recovering from the disease, after suffering fever, diarrhea and partial paralysis.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.