Deadly Legionnaires’ Disease Outbreak Hits Palmanova, Majorca, Spain
Public Health England (PHE) is reporting on an increase in people who have been diagnosed with Legionnaires’ disease, a serious lung infection, following their return from the town of Palmanova in Majorca, Spain. This popular holiday resort is located around 20 minutes away from the nearest airport, offering great beaches and many local attractions.
Reports confirm that one person has died and 17 others have been diagnosed with the Legionnaires’ infection since the middle of September this year. All had travelled to Palmanova prior to falling ill. An investigation is underway by local health officials into the potential source of the infection, and further updates will be made available as more information comes to light.
What travel advice is being given when visiting Majorca?
People are not being told to avoid the area instead, those who are planning to travel to Palmanova, Majorca should be aware of the symptoms that may present in those who contract Legionnaires’ disease. These are often very similar to flu when they first appear. Headaches, a temperature reaching 38 degrees Celsius or higher, and aches and pains can all appear in someone suffering from Legionnaires’ disease.
Once the infection reaches the lungs, further symptoms like those experienced in cases of pneumonia can appear. A cough, followed by chest pains and trouble breathing, can appear.
What should you do if you develop symptoms of Legionnaires’ disease following a trip to Palmanova?
If you develop symptoms of Legionnaires’ disease after visiting Majorca you should visit your doctor straightaway for advice. Tell them your symptoms and that you were in Palmanova recently. The disease takes a few days to develop, which means it is entirely possible some may return from a holiday there feeling fine, and only later develop symptoms.
Additionally, anyone who is planning to visit Palmanova should be aware of the symptoms and seek immediate medical assistance if they develop anything that may suggest they have been infected.
Who is at the greatest risk of developing Legionnaires?
While the disease can be contracted by anyone, those over 50 are at greater risk, as is anyone who has a pre-existing medical condition. It is also more likely to affect those who are heavy smokers, or whose immune system is weaker than it should be.
If you fall into any of these categories, and you have been to Palmanova, Majorca recently, or you are about to go, keep an eye on the latest travel advice for the region. Visit your GP immediately if you develop any symptoms that could be indicative of Legionnaires’ disease, to ensure it is caught early if you do develop it.
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