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'Hot tub lung' is a bacterial condition that causes breathlessness, cough, fever, fatigue and weight loss in older people who have recently used a hot tub. Most commonly these people are incorrectly diagnosed with asthma or bronchitis. A bacteria called Mycobacterium avium causes 'hot tub lung' by living and multiplying in the water, which is then breathed in by the human in steam. It is not able to be transferred between humans. This bacteria normally grows in hot tubs when they are not cleaned frequently or the water is not filtered efficiently. Ways to prevent this condition is to shower before bathing and to regularly maintain the hot tub with clean chlorinated water and replacing filters. Treatment mainly involves emptying the hot tub and avoiding it until well, yet some patients require steroids and antibiotics. Some patients can take up to a year to recover.
Source: summary of medical news story as reported by CBS News
About: Hot tub can cause lung infection
Date: 24 May 2005
Source: CBS News
Author: Linda Little
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