February 19, 2018 zacherlaw 0 Comments

Over the course of the past month, we have not only covered various sporadic cases and outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease, but have also tried to shine light onto other developments within the field. A seemingly simple question, however, has been on my mind as I continue to go through these stories; is there a vaccine that could prevent individuals from being at risk to Legionnaires’ disease? And if there is not a vaccine, then why not? Well the first question is relatively simple to answer; no, there are currently no vaccines for Legionnaires’ disease. There have certainly been attempts to…

February 16, 2018 zacherlaw 0 Comments

The source of Legionella bacteria and where individuals contract Legionnaires’ disease can often be unexpected. In a study from researchers out of the University of Padua, it was found that two men contracted Legionnaires’ disease after using two separate car washes in Italy. And while the location may seem somewhat surprising, according to microbiologist Dr Tom Makin, a senior consultant at Legionella control in the UK, perhaps it shouldn’t be. Indeed Dr. Makin remarks that, “(C)ar washes are capable of generating the right sized aerosols that can be inhaled into the lungs where the Legionella bacteria cause infection, such as pneumonia.’…

February 1, 2018 zacherlaw 0 Comments

In a study released late last year, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention found that cooling towers (CTs) were found to be a leading source of Legionnaires’ disease outbreak across the United States. These results were obtained by obtaining aliquots from various water samples collected during routine Legionella testing from approximately 196 cooling towers across eight of the nine continental US climate regions in order to control for regional differences. After examining these 196 samples, Legionella spp were found in 78 of the samples, L. pneomophila were isolated in approximately 53 of the samples, and L. pneumophila serogroup 1…

July 10, 2017 zacherlaw 0 Comments

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention‘s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report provided data that in 2015, 6,079 cases of Legionnaires’ disease occurred nationwide. Of those cases, 2,809 occurred in 20 states and New York City, and among that figure, 468 cases were possibly associated with health care facilities, while 85 of those definitely were. Of the 85 cases confirmed to be associated with health care facilities, 68 of them- or 80%- were associated with long-term care facilities, and and 15- or 18%- were associated with hospitals. Legionnaires’ disease is a type of bacterial pneumonia caused by exposure to Legionella bacteria. The bacteria…

June 12, 2017 zacherlaw 0 Comments

Positive findings of Legionella bacteria were found throughout the water system in the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The investigation came about after two guests contracted Legionnaires ’ disease following their stay at the Rio Hotel in March and April. Test results conducted by The Southern Nevada Health District following the second reported case of the disease showed the presence of the bacteria. The company is now taking action to remediate the problem and disinfect the water. Guests are being alerted and are being relocated while remediation is taking place.   Legionnaires’ disease is a type of pneumonia…

May 8, 2017 zacherlaw 0 Comments

According to a CDC report based on 27 different outbreaks investigated by the CDC from 2000-2014, released last year, found that hotels and resorts are the most common source of Legionnaires’ Disease outbreaks in the United States. Hotels and resorts were 25 percentage points ahead of long term care facilities and other health care related facilities. Senior living facilities, workplace, and community-associated outbreaks were each found to be responsible for 7% of Legionnaires’ Disease outbreaks. Travel associated outbreaks (hotels and resorts) were found to be the most common source of outbreaks but were also found to have the lowest median fatality rate at…

May 5, 2017 zacherlaw 0 Comments

According to data from the CDC, the number of deaths caused by Legionnaires’ Disease has just about tripled over the past two decades. In 2002 there was 63 deaths directly attributed to Legionnaires’ Disease.  The CDC reported 170 deaths caused by Legionnaires’ Disease in 2015, the most recent year that was analyzed. When Legionnaires’ Disease is taken into account as a contributing factor to death, the number of deaths in 2015 increases to 217. Legionnaires’ Disease is the underlying cause of death in 78.3% of fatalities associated with the disease. The data also shows that the mortality rate for Legionnaires’ Disease…

May 3, 2017 zacherlaw 0 Comments

A recent CDC study of the presence of legionella in our nation’s cooling has produced concerning results. Water from 190+ cooling towers from around the country was collected and tested for the presence of legionella bacteria. The CDC found that 84% of those water samples contained at least DNA traces of legionella bacteria. The study also found that 79 of the 196 (~40%) surveyed cooling towers contained live legionella bacteria. These findings were enough for the study’s head researcher, Dr. Anna Llewellyn, to refer to legionella as being “ubiquitous in U.S. cooling towers”. Cooling towers have been strongly associated with outbreaks of Legionnaires’…

May 2, 2017 zacherlaw 0 Comments

If a company or organization in the UK fails to prevent the spread of legionella on their premises and someone dies of Legionnaires’ Disease as a result, the company could face a charge of corporate manslaughter. As of now, a town council and a discount home improvement warehouse have faced corporate manslaughter charges as a result of Legionnaires’ Disease outbreaks. Following an outbreak of the flu that affected around 120 people who had attended a party at the Playboy Mansion, tests on the mansion’s pool and hot tub showed positive results for legionella bacteria. Though the first officially recorded Legionnaires’ Disease outbreak…

May 1, 2017 zacherlaw 0 Comments

Legionella infections are most commonly associated with cooling towers, hot tubs, pools, showers, and decorative fountains. However, exposure to legionella bacteria can occur through other, more obscure means. Legionellosis (Legionnaires’ Disease) manifests when aerosolized droplets containing legionella bacteria make their way into a patient’s lungs. Legionella bacteria typically is inhaled in through water droplets, but contaminated soil has been found to cause Legionnaires’ Disease on numerous occasions. In Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and Japan, more attention has been paid to the potential risks of acquiring Legionnaires’ Disease or Pontiac Fever from contaminated potting soil. In New Zealand, there was 121 reported…