Impact of the Legionella urinary antigen test on epidemiological trends in community outbreaks of legionellosis in Catalonia, Spain, 1990-2004

Josep Alvarez, Angela Domínguez, Miquel Sabrià, Laura Ruiz, Nuria Torner, Joan Cayla, Irene Barrabeig, M. Rosa Sala, Pere Godoy, Neus Camps, Sofia Minguell

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16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objectives: To describe the characteristics of community outbreaks of legionellosis in Catalonia, Spain from 1990 to 2004, to compare two time periods (1990-1996 and 1997-2004), and to assess the influence of outbreak characteristics on the case fatality rate (CFR). Methods: This is a descriptive analysis of the outbreaks detected by epidemiological surveillance units in Catalonia. Variables potentially related to the CFR were analyzed by logistic regression. Results: Of the 118 outbreaks involving 690 patients (overall CFR 4.5%), the urinary antigen test (UAT) was used for first case diagnosis in 80.5%. The origin of the outbreak was identified as a cooling tower in 35.6%, as a water distribution system in a public building in 14.4%, and a water distribution system at other sites in 7.6%. Statistically significant differences were found in the CFR (12.2% vs. 3.9%; p = 0.018) and detection of the first case by UAT (0.0% vs. 87.2%; p < 0.001) between the two time periods investigated. Logistic regression showed an increase in the CFR according to outbreak size (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 1.18; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.05-1.33) that was significantly lower in the second period (aOR 0.09; 95% CI 0.04-0.20). Conclusions: Since the UAT was introduced, early diagnosis and treatment has helped to improve the outcomes and CFR of cases involved in outbreaks of legionellosis. © 2009 International Society for Infectious Diseases.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Infectious Diseases
Volume13
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2009

Keywords

  • Case fatality rate
  • Community outbreak
  • Laboratory diagnosis
  • Legionellosis
  • Urinary antigen test

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