Disease Information for Legionaires disease: Definition

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  • Pneumonitis from Legionella pneumophilia agent, a bacteria that is difficult to isolate and identify; can cause clusters of outbreaks often airbourne from air-conditioning or shower heads; patchy pneumonia with interstitial effects and hypoxia; meningoencephalitis occurs; diarrhea with acute infection is a usual clinical clue; treatment with erythromycin---Legionnaires" disease is a type of pneumonia named after a severe outbreak that affected a meeting of the American Legion in Philadelphia in 1976; Symptoms sometimes include fever, chills, fatigue, headache, aching muscles, and loss of appetite; Legionnaires" disease has never been found to be transmissible between patients; It is transmitted by inhaling infected water particles in the air from cooking, ventilation or hot-water systems; Cooling towers and evaporative condensers of large air conditioning systems have been associated with outbreaks of the disease, and the highest incidence occurs in the warmest months of the year, the time when air conditioning systems are used the most;

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