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Brian Nettles
Brian Nettles
Attorney • (702) 434-8282

What is Legionnaires’ Disease and how were Las Vegas hotel guests exposed to the deadly bacteria?

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An estimated 8,000 to 18,000 people are hospitalized with Legionnaires’ Disease in the U.S. each year, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). And, that number may be higher as some infections are undiagnosed or not reported.

Legionnaires’ Disease is a form of lung infection caused by the bacterium Legionella pheumophia. The bacteria grow in warm water such as that found in hot tubs, cooling towers, large plumbing or air-conditioning systems, and hot water tanks. It can also be found in excavation sites and newly planted soil. A person becomes contaminated when they breathe in mist or vapor that contains the bacteria.

The bacterium causes pneumonia, which chest X-rays can find, as can testing phlegm, blood or urine. Antibiotics are the preferred treatment. Symptoms typically begin within 2 to 14 days after exposure and can include a high fever, chills, cough and dehydration. Some people may also suffer from muscle aches and headaches.

More serious cases of Legionnaires’ disease can cause respiratory failure, septic shock and/or acute kidney failure. The disease causes death in 5% to 30% of reported cases.

CDC Investigating Outbreak of Legionnaires’ Disease

The Southern Nevada Health District received notification from the CDC of an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease at the Aria Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. The preliminary investigation revealed that six former guests of the hotel were diagnosed with the disease following their stay at the Aria Hotel. Subsequent testing performed by the Health District revealed the hotel’s water system as the most likely source of the bacteria.

Lawsuit Filed Against Aria Casino

Our law firm, Nettles Law Firm, working in conjunction with attorney Jules Zachar, P.C., has filed a massive suit against Aria Casino Resort owners; MGM Resorts and Dubai World – on behalf of eight former guests who were allegedly exposed to the disease during their stay earlier this summer.

Legionnaires’ Disease Prevention

The single most important thing you can do to lower your risk of infection, according to the Mayo Clinic, is to avoid smoking as it increases the chances that you will develop the disease if exposed to the bacteria.

If you or a family member has stayed at Aria and you have been feeling ill or showing symptoms of this disease as outlined above, please see your health care provider immediately. Legionnaires’ disease is treatable if caught quickly.

Feel free to contact the Nettles Law Firm for more information.