What is Legionella: What are its symptoms and how is it spread?

this Legionnaires’ disease Is a disease This is by Legionella bacteria found in the natural environment fresh water, such as lakes and streams. These bacteria can affect people’s health when they multiply and multiply. Spread in sanitary water systems (cold or hot) or other systems that require water to operate.disease it does not spread from person to person not through water consumption, but through transmission Occurs through inhalation of aerosols Can carry bacteria.

What is Legionella

Legionella is an environmental bacterium who usually lives in Still water preferably with temperature Above 35°Cfrom which they can Colonize different water resources, if conditions permit, to reach systems that require water to operate. Thus, they can be cooling towers and/or evaporative condensers, indoor hot and cold water systems for human consumption, decorative fountains, thermal centers, humidifiers, etc.

When this pathogen is present in the form of Aerosol spray (small water droplets produced by the facilities above) and into the respiratory tractwhich can cause Legionnaires’ disease, also known as “legionnaires’ disease,” may be sporadic or localized epidemiological outbreakespecially at certain times of the year Legionnaires’ disease It usually presents two clinical forms: the so-called “pontiac fever‘, not pneumonia, occurs to a lesser extent; and the most famous, is high fever pneumonia sometimes it may be mortal Depends on certain pre-existing risk profiles of the patient (age, chronic disease, diabetes, immunosuppression, blood disorders, smoking, etc.).

Legionella Symptoms

The presence of organic matter favors the growth of Legionella. In the case of Legionnaires’ disease, symptoms in infected people are similar to those of other types of pneumonia. These are some symptoms of this disease:

  • cough
  • Difficulty breathing
  • fever
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache

Although some people experience other symptoms such as Diarrhea, nausea, and confusion. Visible effects usually appear in 2 and 14 days after exposure to bacteria, but they may take longer. Like other lung infections, they can be seen on a chest x-ray.

Pontiac fever, on the other hand, is a milder infection than Legionnaires’ disease.Its main symptoms include fever and muscle aches. They usually start within hours to 3 days of exposure and usually last 1 week. Unlike Legionnaires’ disease, people infected with this virus do not develop pneumonia.

How is Legionella spread?

Due to its adaptability, Legionella can invade artificially constructed tanks such as Drinking water system, cooling system, swimming pool Among other things. However, despite common confusion, you cannot catch this virus by drinking contaminated water.

“The only possible way to contract this disease is to Respiratory tract, by inhalation of small water droplets Allowing the bacteria to reach the lungs produces images of pneumonia. it is not spread by drinking alcohol polluted wateror food.You will not get sick under any circumstances eat or drinks”, explained the Aragonese Ministry of Health, Social Welfare and Family.

for you treat Need to use Antibiotic treatment for 7 to 14 days. In the most severe cases, it may be given intravenously. At present, two patients with Legionella infection in Cáceres are still in the intensive care unit (ICU). Local governments have carried out epidemiological surveys to study this issue.


Recommendations for Legionella include: Avoid using filters and unnecessary accessories in your taps and showers, or extreme cleaning (if available). It is also recommended to use a fat drop diffuser, especially in the shower; to clear weekly those faucets are rarely usedlet the water run for about five minutes, then use a suitable product to remove the limescale.

If the building has human potable deposits, water tanks or cold water storage tanks, it is recommended that they be Protection from overheating and contamination, and cover with a waterproof cover. It is also important that they have a system that continuously renews the water, and in general, annual cleaning and disinfection is recommended.

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If the building has a centralized hot water system, it is necessary to have a maintenance plan which includes Tank cleaning and annual preventive treatment.On the other hand, if the home has an electric water heater or a combustion boiler with a heat accumulator, it is recommended to keep Storage tank temperature is higher than 60°C And don’t turn it off at night.

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