Legionnaires' disease | Experienced Legionnaires Lawyer Elliot Olsen | Siegel Brill Injury Law | Legionnaires' Attorney

Legionnaires' Disease

Injured by Legionnaires’ disease?
Call (612) 337-6126

Few lawyers are experienced with Legionnaires’ disease. Elliot Olsen is one who can call it an area of expertise. If you know someone who became sick with Legionnaires’ disease, please have them call Elliot at (612) 337-6126 for a free consultation. You’ll be doing them a favor.

Legionnaires’ disease — also known as Legionella pneumonia or legionellosis — is a severe form of pneumonia, a respiratory illness that causes the air sacs in the lungs to fill with water or pus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that the disease affects about 5,000 Americans each year – in 2018, that number was more than 10,000 – with 10 percent of those cases resulting in death. The disease is caught by inhaling water droplets — usually in the form of mist or vapor — that contain Legionella bacteria (Legionella pneumophila). The bacteria are found primarily in human-made, warm-water environments: industrial cooling systems, air conditioners, whirlpool spas, and hot tubs, to name a few. The incubation period — the time between breathing in the bacteria and symptoms developing — is usually 2 to 10 days but can be as much as 16 days.

After Legionnaires’ disease has been diagnosed, hospitalization often is necessary. In the most severe cases of Legionnaires’ disease, complications can include respiratory failure, kidney failure, and septic shock. All of these conditions are very dangerous and can be fatal. It is imperative to monitor conditions closely.

Attorney Elliot Olsen provided his valuable insights on Legionnaires’ disease to Bloomberg’s Toxic Law reporter Peter Hayes, the story can be found here.

There are certain factors that elevate the risk of developing Legionella pneumonia:

  • People 50 or older: Men and women older than 50 are more susceptible to Legionella.
  • Smoking: Current or former smokers are at an elevated risk for infection.
  • Weakened immune system: People with compromised immune systems caused by illness or injury are more vulnerable.
  • Lung disease: Individuals with chronic lung disease or COPD (most commonly, bronchitis or emphysema) are considered high risk.
Examining Legionella bacteria
Legionnaires' disease | Experienced Legionnaires Lawyer Elliot Olsen | Siegel Brill Injury Law | Legionnaires' Attorney

Legionnaires’ disease often begins with these symptoms:

  • cough
  • headaches
  • muscle pains
  • chills
  • loss of appetite
  • fever.

After the first few days of the disease presenting, symptoms can worsen to include:

  • shortness of breath
  • chest pain while breathing (called pleuritic chest pain, due to inflamed lungs)
  • mental confusion and agitation
  • severe gastrointestinal illness, including nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

In order to prove a Legionnaires' disease claim, several things are needed:

A confirmed diagnosis of Legionnaires'

A doctor needs to confirm that your or your loved one have Legionnaires’ disease. The doctor will draw blood and have it tested. In addition, a chest X-ray might be taken to determine the severity of the infection.

A discovery of Legionella bacteria in body fluid

An epidemiological professional can test blood or urine for Legionella antigens. Antigens are the body’s immune response to the presence of a foreign toxin or bacteria. A doctor may also test phlegm for Legionella bacteria.

A pinpointed source

After a doctor confirms the presence of Legionnaires’ disease, the next step is discovering the source of the contamination. Generally, Legionella affects more than one person in the same area and period, which constitutes an outbreak. However, being a confirmed as part of an outbreak is not necessary to file a lawsuit. Knowing you are part of a confirmed outbreak simply helps in providing answers and peace of mind.

An epidemiological and environmental investigation

A confirmed diagnosis should be reported to the state health department by the doctor or lab technician who made the diagnosis. An epidemiological investigation may reveal that the infected family member is part of an outbreak, or at the very least identify the source of the exposure. An environmental investigation involves taking a sample of the suspected source of the Legionella bacteria.

What then?

Speaking with Elliot Olsen — who has extensive experience with Legionnaires’ disease cases — early in the diagnosis can expedite the process. Elliot will know the proper steps to take, and he will be able to provide guidance for you and your loved ones, moving your family closer to answers and peace of mind.

Legionnaires' disease | Experienced Legionnaires Lawyer Elliot Olsen | Siegel Brill Injury Law | Legionnaires' Attorney

Contact Elliot today

If you or a family member have become seriously ill from Legionnaires’ disease, you might have reason to contact Elliot, an experienced Legionnaires’ lawyer who understands the complexity of the disease.

    Contact attorney Elliot Olsen for a free consultation: