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legionnaires' disease
First identified in 1976 as the result of an outbreak of pneumonia at an American Legion convention, Legionnaires' disease is a severe form of pneumonia. Legionnaires' disease is caused by a bacterium known as legionella.

The bacterium Legionella pneumophila is responsible for most cases of Legionnaire's disease, although several other species of legionella also can cause infection. Legionella bacteria thrive in warm, damp environments. In nature, they can survive for months in lakes, rivers, hot springs and soil but the levels of bacteria are so low that they rarely cause problems. The real threat is indoors, where legionella bacteria can multiply in water systems, whirlpool spas, and air conditioning systems.
Symptoms may include:
  • headache
  • muscle pain
  • chills
  • high fever
  • cough
  • shortness of breath
  • chest pain
  • fatigue
  • loss of appetite
  • nausea and vomiting
  • mental changes
Treatment may include:

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Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton Hamilton. Phone: 609-586-7900 Physician Referral: 609-584-5900.

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