Microbiological Water Analysis for Legionella Detection

What is Legionellosis?

It is a type of pneumonia that results in the death of about 13% of people who will be infected with Legionella bacteria

These bacteria can also cause a less serious illness (Pontiac fever) which is very similar to a runny nose.

The disease usually develops within 3-6 days, but sometimes it can appear up tο 10 days after the infection of the person. The bacterium Legionella is found in small numbers in our natural moist environment (lakes, rivers, dams) It can survive in a wide range of temperatures (from 6-60 ° C). It cannot multiply at temperatures below 20 degrees while temperatures above 60 ° C, kill the bacterium.

Contrary to temperatures from 20 ° C to 45 ° C where it multiplies easily and can colonize cold or hot water systems hence infect humans.

How can one get sick from legionella?

Breathing air containing Legionella bacteria in invisible aerosol (aerosol).

This aerosol can come from water droplets formed by the head of a running shower, from the mouth of a common faucet, from the emptying of a toilet bowl, from air bubbles in a spa-jacuzzi.

On the contrary, they are found in high numbers in poorly maintained water circulation systems.

How to prevent Legionella
  • Implement the control procedures of this problem, by taking the necessary actions of disinfection and sanitation of the hot and cold-water circulation systems
  • and to have certificates of analysis from appropriate and specialized laboratories that ensure that the water has been tested and is safe for legionella.
  1. Check if the hot water running in our room from the shower and taps is hot enough (55-60 degrees Celsius) with a thermometer if present or with great care not to burn it with your hand, so we cannot hold it for more than a few seconds under water.
  2. Try to smell in the cold water after letting it run for 3-4 minutes, putting it in a glass, the well-known smell of chlorine (indication that the water is at least chlorinated and thus provides some security).
  3. When we enter an area, and before using the facilities, let us turn on the taps and showers and allow them to run for a few minutes – both hot and cold water coming out of the room for a while, especially if we get the impression that the site does not appear to have been used recently.

Hundreds of cases of Legionella are reported each year throughout the European Union and most often the point of infection is the showers of the hotels where the tourists stay.
Compensation to infected people can rise up to thousands of euros.

Our Laboratories are accredited by the National Accreditation System (ESYD), according to the ELOT EN°ISO / IEC 17025°standard and we perform water analyzes to detect the Legionella bacterium (Accreditation Field Analysis).

Microbiological – Chemical analyzes of water, food and biological purifications are performed in our Laboratories at competitive prices.

Sampling and analysis are performed according to:

  • the European Organization for Legionella Infection (EWGLI),
  • the circular on “Prevention of the disease of legionnaires”
  • the circular on “Prevention of Legionnaires disease in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • the sampling rules of KEDY (Central Laboratory of Public Health)
  • ECDC Legionella  Prevention Guidelines



Microbiological Parameter

Methods of analysis

Legionella spp

ISO 11731:2017 (E)

It is emphasized that:

  • To ensure the health of the population active in the swimming pools, it is proposed to implement a shower water control program for the Legionella germ, a germ that is blamed for causing severe lung disease in specific population groups or not (often fatal), such as is that of travelers.
  • The above check must be done every six months.
  • 4 samples will be taken (cold direct, cold indirect, hot direct, hot indirect) from each locker room shower, as determined by the respective instructions of the Ministry of Health
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