Legionella pneumophila is a dangerous bacteria spread through water mist in the air, inside places you might not suspect such as hotels and grocery stores. You cannot catch it from another person. Early symptoms seem like pneumonia but the disease has been fatal in 5-30% of cases.
Legionella and a milder flu-like form called Pontiac Fever, both called Legionellosis, are often wrongly diagnosed. While immediate antibiotic treatment may cure the disease, problems such as fatigue, nerve and muscular symptoms can continue long after.
NOTE: The first recognized cases of Legionnaires’ disease occurred in 1976 in Philadelphia, PA. Among attendees of a Legionnaires’ convention held at the Bellevue-Stratford Hotel, 221 attendees contracted the disease and 34 of them died.
You may have seen more recent news coverage of Legionnaires’ disease on a cruise ship and even in Louisiana at a grocery store with contaminated produce misting. It should be the responsibility of these facilities to meticulously clean and disinfect systems, regularly test the water and quickly alert anyone who may have been exposed. Because that is not dependable, you will have to be watchful about your own possible illness.
Most sources of infection are buildings such as hotels that contain Hot tubs, Whirlpools, Swimming Pools or Fountains.
You do not need to be in the water. The bacterium releases into the air and is circulated throughout the cooling and heating system. So you could become exposed anywhere in a building or structure.
Testing long after exposure and even treatment can detect antibodies that prove the disease is still in your system. You may have long-term symptoms that you are not aware resulted from this disease.
Tell us the details of your stay and whether you had later symptoms. We can arrange for medical tests to determine whether you were exposed. Our Attorneys are familiar with this disease and have represented clients in previous Louisiana cases, which resulted in compensation.