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Legionnaire's Disease Symptoms & Diagnosis


Symptoms may include:

  • Fatigue
  • Fever (often high)
  • Chills and muscle aches
  • Dry cough
  • Chest pain with coughing or breathing
  • Loss of appetite
  • Headache

Symptoms that develop if the infection becomes serious include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Abdominal pain
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
  • Mental problems, confusion, or memory loss


The doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done.

Tests may include:

  • Blood tests—to look for high or rising antibodies to Legionella bacteria
  • Sputum tests—mucus from deep inside your lungs is examined to identify the cause of the infection
  • Kidney function tests—poor kidney function is often seen with Legionella infection
  • Urine tests—to check for Legionella proteins in the urine
  • Chest x-ray —to diagnose pneumonia or lung infection

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2019 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.

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