Diagnosis

Legionnaires' disease is similar to other types of pneumonia. To help identify the presence of legionella bacteria quickly, your doctor may use a test that checks your urine for legionella antigens — foreign substances that trigger an immune system response. You may also have one or more of the following:

  • Blood tests
  • Chest X-ray, which doesn't confirm legionnaires' disease but can show the extent of infection in your lungs
  • Tests on a sample of your sputum or lung tissue
  • A CT scan of your brain or a spinal tap (lumbar puncture) if you have neurological symptoms such as confusion or trouble concentrating
Sept. 24, 2016
References
  1. Yu VL, et al. Epidemiology and pathogenesis of Legionella infection. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed March 23, 2016.
  2. Legionella (Legionnaires' disease and Pontiac fever). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/legionella/index.html. Accessed March 22, 2016.
  3. Longo DL, et al., eds. Legionella infections. In: Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 19th ed. New York, N.Y.: McGraw-Hill Education; 2015. http://accessmedicine.com. Accessed March 23, 2016.
  4. Yu VL, et al. Clinical manifestations and diagnosis of legionella infection. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed March 23, 2016.
  5. Papadakis MA, et al., eds. Bacterial and chlamydial infections. In: Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment 2016. 55th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2016. http://www.accessmedicine.com. Accessed March 23, 2016.
  6. Yu VL, et al. Treatment and prevention of legionella infection. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed March 23, 2016.