Navigation Links
Study finds environmental tests help predict hospital-acquired Legionnaires' disease risk
Date:8/22/2007

PITTSBURGH, Aug. 22 A new study spearheaded by the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine has determined that environmental monitoring of institutional water systems can help to predict the risk of hospital-acquired Legionella pneumonia, better known as Legionnaires disease. Reported recently in the journal Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, the 20-hospital study also calls for reconsideration of the current national infection-control policy to include routine testing of hospital water systems for Legionella, the bacterial group associated with Legionnaires.

Only those hospitals that had high levels of Legionella bacteria in their water systems had patients who contracted Legionnaires disease, senior author Victor L. Yu, M.D., professor of medicine at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, said of the study, which involved hospitals in 14 states. Proactive monitoring of the hospital water supply alerted physicians to the hidden risk of Legionnaires disease for their patients.

Legionella bacteria first were identified as causing pneumonia in 1976 following an outbreak among attendees at an American Legion convention at a Philadelphia hotel, resulting in the name Legionnaires disease. With an average fatality rate of 28 percent, Legionnaires is estimated to be responsible for up to 20,000 cases a year in the United States, many of them hospital-acquired. Currently, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that hospitals and other health care institutions monitor patients for pneumonia incidence before doing environmental surveillance of water systems that can harbor the bacteria.

Based in part on our work, and in collaboration with the Allegheny County Health Department and the Three Rivers Association for Professionals in Infection Control, the development of proactive guidelines for hospital-acquired Legionnaires disease prevention has led to the virtual disappearance of this infection in Pittsburgh, said study first author Janet Stout, Ph.D., research assistant professor in Pitts department of civil and environmental engineering. We first reported the connection between hospital water supply and these infections in 1982.

For this investigation, Drs. Yu, Stout and colleagues evaluated samples of hospital system water at 20 facilities across the country from 2000 to 2002. Water samples were retrieved from at least 10 separate sites at each hospital on multiple occasions over the two-year period. When cases of Legionnaires were identified, patient urine and sputum samples from 12 of the hospitals were tested to determine classification of Legionella, which has at least 48 strains.

The researchers found that 14 (70 percent) of hospital water systems tested positive for Legionella species, and that six (43 percent) positive hospitals had high-level colonization. Legionnaires cases were among the 633 patients with hospital-acquired pneumonia whose urine or sputum samples were tested for Legionella bacteria. All were traced to hospitals with high-level colonization.

Our study provides much-needed evidence to support a national policy change to include routine environmental surveillance of health care facility water systems along with stringent clinical monitoring of patients, said Dr. Stout, who estimates that 39,000 people have died of Legionnaires since 1982. We think this long overdue approach should be adopted by infection control and infectious disease practitioners nationwide.


'/>"/>

Contact: Michele Baum
BaumMD@upmc.edu
412-647-3555
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Bioartificial kidney under study at MCG
2. Novel Asthma Study Shows Multiple Genetic Input Required; Single-gene Solution Shot Down
3. W.M. Keck Foundation funds study of friendly microbes
4. Yellowstone microbes fueled by hydrogen, according to U. of Colorado study
5. Emory Study Tests Bone Marrow Stem Cells to Improve Circulation in Legs
6. UCLA Study Shows One-Third of Drug Ads in Medical Journals Do Not Contain References Supporting Medical Claims
7. Study Demonstrates Gene Expression Microarrays are Comparable and Reproducible
8. Study Links Ebola Outbreaks To Animal Carcasses
9. Genome-wide mouse study yields link to human leukemia
10. Breakthrough Microarray-based Technology for the Study of Cancer
11. NYU Study Reveals How Brains Immune System Fights Viral Encephalitis
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/15/2016)... ALBANY, New York , June 15, 2016 ... published a new market report titled "Gesture Recognition Market ... Trends and Forecast, 2016 - 2024". According to the ... at USD 11.60 billion in 2015 and is ... and reach USD 48.56 billion by 2024.  ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... June 2, 2016 The Department of ... awarded the 44 million US Dollar project, for the ... Plates including Personalization, Enrolment, and IT Infrastructure , ... the production and implementation of Identity Management Solutions. Numerous renowned ... Decatur was selected for the most ...
(Date:5/20/2016)...  VoiceIt is excited to announce its new ... By working together, VoiceIt and VoicePass will offer ... take slightly different approaches to voice biometrics, collaboration ... usability. Both ... "This marketing and technology partnership allows ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... and technical consulting, provides a free webinar on Performing Quality Investigations: ... 2016 at 12pm CT at no charge. , Incomplete investigations are still a ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 22, 2016  Amgen (NASDAQ: AMGN ... QB3@953 life sciences incubator to accelerate the ... shared laboratory space at QB3@953 was created to help ... obstacle for many early stage organizations - access to ... sponsorship, Amgen launched two "Amgen Golden Ticket" awards, providing ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... , June 22, 2016 Cell Applications, ... allow them to produce up to one billion ... lot within one week. These high-quality, consistent stem ... preparing cells and spend more time doing meaningful, ... a proprietary, high-volume manufacturing process that produces affordable, ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... June 22, 2016  According to Kalorama Information, ... sequencing (NGS) market include significant efforts in automation ... More accessible and affordable sequencers, say the healthcare ... for consumables including sample prep materials.  The healthcare ... Sample Preparation for Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) , ...
Breaking Biology Technology: