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Chapter 6 : Trends Observed in Legionnaires’ Disease in a Hospital in Catalonia, Spain, 1983–2005
Legionella pneumophila has been recognized as an important cause of community-and hospital-acquired pneumonia in both healthy and immunosuppressed patients since its first description in 1976. The authors have systematically used urinary antigen testing as a specific diagnostic test for Legionella infection since 1994. It should also be pointed out that the reporting of Legionnaires’ disease (LD) has been mandatory in Catalonia since 1987. This chapter describes demographic data; clinical, analytical, and radiological characteristics; diagnostic methods; and therapeutic data of a series of community- and hospital-acquired cases of LD collected from 1983 to 2005. It determines trends in demographic and clinical data, individual risk factors, diagnostic methods, and outcome over time. Mortality by nosocomial and community-acquired LD combined has almost significantly decreased over time, which may be due to the earlier diagnosis and changes in treatment.