Legionnaires' disease

Legionnaires’ disease is a serious pneumonia caused by the Legionella bacteria.

People become infected when they inhale water droplets from a contaminated water source such as cooling towers, air conditioning systems and spa pools.

Early symptoms include muscle aches, tiredness, headaches, a dry cough and fever. Sometimes you may also have diarrhoea and develop confusion. The symptoms of pneumonia are a cough, shortness of breath and chest pain.

Useful resources:

Please note the British Lung Foundation is not responsible for the accuracy or quality of the information found on the websites listed above.

If you're living with a lung condition, you can call our helpline for support or join one of our local support groups.

Breath Easy Nottingham

Find support in your area

BLF Helpline

Speak to our helpline

Call 03000 030 555


Last medically reviewed: December 2016. Due for review: December 2019

This information uses the best available medical evidence and was produced with the support of people living with lung conditions. Find out how we produce our information. If you’d like to see our references get in touch.