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How Air Conditioners Can Be Dangerous

Legionnaires' disease

Story at-a-glance -

  • Legionnaires’ disease first entered the American consciousness in 1976 when scores of people were sickened and 29 died of a mysterious lung infection at a hotel convention in Philadelphia
  • Exerts have pointed to what is now called Legionella bacteria found in water sources as the culprits behind Legionnaires’ disease, which typically causes pneumonia, as well as vomiting, diarrhea, muscle pain and mental confusion
  • The CDC reports that 8,000 to 18,000 people are hospitalized with Legionnaires’ annually, although it may take doctors time to determine what it is, as the symptoms at first seem like a typical, mild respiratory infection
  • To help ensure optimal air and water quality, clean your air conditioner, heat ducts and filters regularly, and provide filtered water for every member of your family to avoid potentially deadly bacteria

By Dr. Mercola

Legionnaires’ disease first entered the news about 40 years ago when, according to The Legionnaires' Lawyer, 34 people died from a mysterious respiratory ailment. The same illness emerged again recently when 12 people at Disneyland became infected with the lung disease, with one fatality. Clues left for investigators to sort out were that the individuals ranged in age from 52 to 94.


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