Several patients recently arrived at The Queen’s Medical Center in Honolulu presenting with symptoms of pneumonia. However, these patients were not dealing with a run-of-the-mill variety of pneumococcal pneumonia—they had Legionnaire’s Disease, and of the four people who came to Queen’s Hospital with these symptoms, one is now deceased. All of the patients were people over 50 years of age with previously existing medical conditions, and these risk factors may have made them more susceptible to contracting the illness.
Legionnaire’s Disease, also called Legionellosis or Pontiac Fever, is an acute infection caused by a bacterium that is typically found in areas where water is present, such as pools, bathtubs, and water features. The disease may resemble a less severe illness when it first presents, such as a flu virus, but Legionnaire’s Disease can be deadly, especially among those who have COPD, those who smoke cigarettes, or those who use steroid-based anti-inflammatory medications—common risk factors for contracting Legionellosis.
Legionnaire’s Disease typically presents with symptoms that may accompany a variety of other illnesses, making it difficult to diagnose. However, the most common symptoms of Legionnaire’s are:
If you or someone you know have experienced any of these symptoms and suspect Legionnaire’s may be to blame, seek medical help immediately.
According to data published by non-profit organization Legionella.org, as many as 18,000 people are diagnosed with Legionnaire’s Disease each year in the United States alone. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that one-tenth of those diagnosed with the illness will end up being fatal cases and that many cases likely go undiagnosed due to Legionellosis symptoms being so similar to those of other illnesses. The bacterium responsible for the illness can be found anywhere fresh water is found, and breathing in infected mists from shower heads or water features is a common way to contract the illness.
Seek medical attention if you think you may have contracted Legionnaire’s Disease. This illness can result in serious, life-changing injuries including massive organ failure if left untreated. Be sure to document all expenses related to treatment, including medical bills and lost wages, and consider places where the illness may have been contracted for the purposes of investigation.
If you or a loved one have suffered injuries from organ failure due to Legionnaire’s Disease, legal help is just a call or a click away. The experienced organ failure lawyers in Hawaii at Kurzban Kurzban, Weinger, Tetzeli & Pratt P.A. offer consultations free of charge. They will examine the details of your case and help guide you through the legal system so you can get the financial compensation you deserve as a victim. Don’t suffer alone another day—call now.