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How to prevent Legionnaires' disease?

Active surveillance of infections that were acquired within a hospital can lead to the treatment of contaminated water delivery systems. Detection and treatment of sources outside hospitals usually occurs during or after an epidemic has happened. Since the bacteria thrive in warm stagnant water, regularly disinfecting ductwork, pipes, and other areas that may serve as breeding areas is the best method for preventing outbreaks of Legionnaires' disease. Most outbreaks of Legionnaires' disease can be traced to specific points of exposure, such as hospitals, hotels, and other places where people gather. Sporadic cases are harder to determine and there is insufficient evidence to point to exposure in individual homes. People with compromised immune systems are at high risk for Legionnaires' disease. Facilities that care for these people should monitor water supplies for the bacteria. Vaccinations are being developed for use in high risk individuals.


More information on Legionnaires' disease

What is Legionnaires' disease? - Legionnaires' disease is a type of pneumonia that is caused by Legionella, a bacterium found primarily in warm water environments.
What causes Legionnaires' disease? - Legionnaires' disease is caused by inhaling Legionella bacteria from the environment. The bacteria are dispersed in aerosols of contaminated water.
How is Legionnaires' disease transmitted? - Most people contract Legionnaires' disease by inhaling mist that comes from a water source contaminated with Legionella bacteria.
What're the symptoms of Legionnaires' disease? - The early symptoms of legionellosis may be flu-like with muscle aches, headaches, tiredness and a dry cough followed by a fever.
How is Legionnaires' disease diagnosed? - The diagnosis of Legionnaires' disease is the process of identifying a disease by its signs, symptoms and results of various diagnostic procedures.
What's the treatment for Legionnaires' disease? - The goal of treatment for Legionnaires' disease is to eliminate the infection with antibiotics. Treatment is started as soon as Legionnaire's disease is suspected.
How to prevent Legionnaires' disease? - People with compromised immune systems are at high risk for Legionnaires' disease. Vaccinations are being developed for use in high risk individuals.
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