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Clin Med (Lond). 2013 Apr;13(2):152-9. doi: 10.7861/clinmedicine.13-2-152.

Legionella pneumonia cases over a five-year period: a descriptive, retrospective study of outcomes in a UK district hospital.

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  • 1Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, UK.


As the recent outbreaks in Edinburgh and Camarthen, UK, have shown, Legionella pneumonia (LP) remains a significant public health problem, which is not only confined to those who have travelled abroad. In both outbreaks and sporadic cases, diagnosis can go unrecognised. We reviewed the demographics, comorbidities, diagnosis, treatment and clinical outcome of LP cases over five years in a district general hospital in northwest England. Over half of LP cases were UK acquired and 'classic' clinical features were common. Clinical criteria for diagnosing LP were confirmed, but few sputum samples were sent to reference laboratories, limiting further essential epidemiological mapping of UK cases. Following current UK community-acquired pneumonia guidance would have missed nearly one quarter of LP cases in our series, potentially leading to further morbidity and mortality.


CURB-65; Legionella; atypical; descriptive; outcome; pneumonia

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