Genesee County reports 1st case of Legionnaires for 2016 - WNEM TV 5

Genesee County reports 1st case of Legionnaires for 2016

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Source: CNN Source: CNN

Genesee County has its first Legionnaires’ case for 2016.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and the Genesee County Health Department (GCHD) report that on July 6 an older adult resident was diagnosed with the disease.

That person is currently hospitalized, and the MDHHS and GCHD report there is no indication that they were exposed within the city of Flint. Although they are working to identify where that exposure happened.

The announcement was made after 91 cases of Legionnaires were reported from 2014-2015 in Genesee County. Twelve people died. Some experts believe the Flint River was the source of the Legionella bacteria, although no definitive link has been made. Flint was using the Flint River for water at that time.

Most years Genesee County has nine to eleven cases.

Legionnaires’ disease is a kind of pneumonia, or an infection of the lungs

People can get Legionnaires’ disease by breathing in small droplets of water (mist) that contain Legionella bacteria.

People don’t get Legionnaires’ disease from drinking water, but may be exposed if water goes down the airway.

Although people can get the disease at any time of year, it’s more common in summer and fall when temperatures are warmer.

Most healthy people do not get sick after being exposed to Legionella. Being 50 years or older or having certain risk factors increases the chances of getting sick. Other risk factors include being a current or former smoker; having chronic lung disease, such as emphysema or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; having a weakened immune system from diseases like cancer, diabetes, or kidney failure; or taking medicine that weakens your immune system.

Legionnaires’ disease begins with flu-like symptoms such as fever, headache, muscle aches, and chills. In some people, more serious symptoms start to develop in as little as 1 to 2 days, including high fever, a cough that is usually dry but sometimes produces mucus, difficulty breathing, chest pains, chills, or diarrhea.

See the press release from the MDHHS and GCHD below:

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