Rachel Wright, a young 36-year-old woman from Georgia, became will with Legionnaires’ disease while visiting her family in Joppa, Alabama. She exhibited symptoms before her arrival and is improving, but is also on a ventilator and under sedation at the Marshall Medical Center North.
Most people who contract the illness tend to be older individuals, so it is uncommon for young people in their 30s to contract Legionnaires’ disease. Ms. Wright, however, had Crohn’s Disease weakened her immune system, making her more susceptible to other illnesses.
The Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) in Montgomery was notified of the case. According to Dr. Mary McIntyre of the ADPH, in 2013, there were 41 confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ disease in Alabama – the highest number of cases in the past five years. Furthermore, 18 cases have been reported in Alabama for 2014 so far.
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