BEACON TRANSCRIPT – Health officials are concerned after three additional cases of Legionnaires diseases were confirmed. There have been 23 cases confirmed in a short period of time, which makes the situation more difficult to handle. The officials did not find a common source of the exposure. However, it seems that all the people who got sick lived, worked our spent time in Hopkins.
The Minnesota Health Department thinks that contaminated water could be responsible for the Legionnaires disease outbreak. There were seven locations in the area which are supposed to be the sources of infection. The cooling towers found in those locations were reviewed by their owners last week. According to tot the law, building owners are responsible for operating cooling towers.
Unfortunately, there was one person who died from this diseases since the outbreak began in September. Health officials are expecting more cases because the state has a history regarding this issue. From 2012 to 2014, there were 58 reported cases every year. However, things are getting worse this year, when 90 cases have already been reported.
Legionnaire’s disease is caused by a bacteria. When it is aerosolized in contaminated water and inhaled, the virus becomes dangerous for humans. It symptoms are similar to pneumonia. Patients could cough, have shortness of breath or headaches. The good news is that the virus can’t be spread from a human to another. People who smoke, older adults and those who suffer from chronic diseases should pay more attention because they have more chances to get the bacteria.
This disease can lead to complications. People can have respiratory failure, when the lungs are not able to provide the body with enough oxygen. Moreover, another common side effect is kidney failure. This happens when kidneys can’t filter waste material from our blood. People can die due to this Legionnaires’ Disease.If you are not feeling well or have problems with your respiratory system, you should go to a doctor as fast as you can. The disease can be treated with antibiotics. If you get treatment in time, the bacteria will be gone in a few weeks. However, most patients stay in hospital to make sure they are safe.
It is enough for the doctors to make a blood test. They will discover if something is not right. However, because it has similar symptoms to pneumonia, they are using also urine test. This helps them see if the patient was infected and to know what treatment they are going to use for him.
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