Seventh Legionella case confirmed as 13 suspected instances probed

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The number of confirmed cases in the Capital’s Legionnaire’s disease outbreak has risen to seven, with 13 suspected cases now being investigated.

Six men aged between 39 and 65 are in critical condition with the disease, and are being treated in intensive care.

A seventh man has recovered and been discharged from hospital.

The confirmed cases are all being linked to the Dalry, Gorgie and Saughton areas of Edinburgh, where efforts are continuing to try and trace the source of the outbreak.

KNOW THE FACTS

• What is Legionnaire’s disease?

It is a potentially fatal illness caused by Legionella bacteria.

• How is it spread?

It is not spread from person to person. Outbreaks occur when the bacteria grows in purpose-built systems where water is kept at a high temperature, such as spa pools and cooling towers. It is caught by inhaling droplets of water.

• What are the symptoms?

There may be mild headaches and muscle pain, followed by more severe symptoms including high fever, more severe muscle pain and chills. A persistent cough may then develop. Some develop stomach problems and confusion.

• Who is most at risk?

People over 45 years of age, smokers and heavy drinkers, people with chronic respiratory or kidney disease, and anyone with immune system conditions.

• When should I go to my doctors?

If you are in a high-risk group and notice symptoms contact your GP or call NHS 24 on 08454 242424.

• What is the treatment?

Antibiotics and intensive care support where necessary.