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Schaumburg medical negligence attorney Legionnaires disease

First discovered following a 1976 outbreak at an American Legion convention in Philadelphia, Legionnaires’ disease left affected attendees with serious lung infections -- a type of pneumonia -- caused by bacteria known as Legionella. Research has shown that this bacteria grows in poorly managed water systems, often due to negligence on behalf of a building’s owner, such as those who own a nursing home facility that houses a complex water system. When mist from this infected water is inhaled, through showers or hot tubs, for example, residents can contract Legionnaires’ disease, posing grave risks to their health. The same bacteria that causes this disease was also responsible for cases of Pontiac fever that occurred in Michigan during the 1960s. 

The Prevalence of Legionnaires’ Cases Today

Although the disease earned its name back in the 1970s, cases of Legionnaires’ disease are still very prevalent today. The number of cases has fluctuated over time, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported there were nearly 10,000 cases in the United States in 2018. The CDC has also stated that this number is likely a misrepresentation of the actual number of people affected by the disease, as many cases are undiagnosed. 

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Rolling Meadows medical negligence attorney Legionnaires' disease

Named after a 1976 outbreak at an American Legion meeting, Legionnaires’ disease is a type of bacterial pneumonia brought on by inhaling mist in the air that is contaminated with Legionella bacteria. This bacteria is typically carried through water systems and air conditioning ventilation systems, and according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it is deadly to 1 in 10 people who contract the disease. Diagnosis sometimes emerges following medical malpractice or due to building maintenance negligence by the property owner, especially in hotels, resorts, and long-term-care facility settings, which are common environments for outbreaks.

Modes of Transmission and Diagnosis

Unlike some conditions, Legionnaires’ disease is not transmitted from person to person, so it cannot be contracted from interacting with someone who carries the bacteria. However, the circumstances surrounding how you picked up the bacteria and how or when you were diagnosed can all make a significant difference in your case when it comes to pursuing compensation for the damage to your health and the expenses you incurred because of the disease.

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Arlington Heights medical error attorney

If you believe you have suffered in some way due to the negligence of a medical professional, you might want to consider filing a medical malpractice claim. While these cases might be complex, especially depending on which types of accusations are being levied, the actual elements of a medical malpractice claim—the parties, the proof, and the process—are relatively straightforward. Below is a brief summary of each component.

The Parties

The parties involved in a medical practice claim and the terms used to describe these parties are as follows:

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Rolling Meadows personal injury attorney Legionnaires' diseaseAlthough many people may have heard of Legionnaires' disease, they may not know that it is a severe form of pneumonia. In many cases, it is possible that the disease could have been prevented. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with the condition, you and your family may be entitled to compensation. In some cases, the misdiagnosis of this disease may even be the result of medical malpractice. Typically contracted through the inhalation of contaminated mist, the condition can be fatal, especially in those with compromised immune systems or certain lung conditions. Victims and their families may be able to pursue compensation for a Legionnaires' disease infection through a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. 

Symptoms of the Disease

At first, Legionnaires' disease may look like the flu, as early symptoms include headaches, fever, and muscle aches. However, as the condition worsens -- typically by the second or third day after contracting the infection -- the victim may experience chest pain, shortness of breath, gastrointestinal issues, confusion, and severe coughing, which may produce mucus or blood. If left untreated, the condition can (and often does) result in fatality. Those with compromised immune systems, such as the elderly and those with specific lung disorders, are not only at higher risk for fatalities, but they are also at an increased risk for contracting Legionnaires’ disease. A milder form of Legionnaires disease, Pontiac fever, can produce the early symptoms but may not progress in severity. Still, victims may be entitled to compensation for any medical expenses, missed time at work, or pain and suffering related to their condition.

How Is the Disease Contracted? 

Like other forms of pneumonia, Legionnaires' disease is an inflammation in the lungs caused by an infection. It is contracted through the inhalation of the bacterium legionella. Found in both soil and water, the most common method of intake is through a mist, such as via an air conditioning unit of an old building, where the bacteria is able to grow and run rampant. Other places and ways that the condition can be contracted include:

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Palatine car accident attorney soft issue injury

Soft tissue injuries are some of the most common injuries that can occur in car accidents. If you have been the victim of a vehicle collision, it is important to not ignore sprains and strains or dismiss them as minor injuries. Additionally, it is helpful to familiarize yourself with how to increase your chances of receiving fair compensation for any losses that you or your loved ones have experienced in a crash caused by a negligent driver.

What Is a Soft Tissue Injury?

Soft tissue injuries are caused by a sudden, uncontrolled overextension of muscles. Such injuries typically occur in crashes because of the jarring motion of a collision or because a part of the body became entrapped. Injuries like these are classified as either sprains or strains. Strains are injuries to the ligaments, while sprains are injuries to either the tendons or the muscles themselves.

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