Playboy Mansion Outbreak Linked to Legionnaires’ Disease

According to Orlando Sentinel, a recent flu-like symptoms outbreak in Los Angeles may have been caused by a bacterium that grows in warm water. Two hundred Playboy Mansion partygoers became sick with fever, headaches and all over body aches, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.

Partygoers attended a fundraising event and festivities at the infamous bachelor pad on February 3, after attending a networking conference. Two days later, local hospitals and doctors reported seeing those partygoers for flu-like symptoms. While officials have not determined the cause, some attendees reported their doctors had said symptoms stemmed from Legionnaires’ disease, a type of pneumonia characterized with fever and headaches. One partygoer, David Castello, claims he suddenly fell ill with uncontrollable chills and a 102-degree fever. Castello, co-founder of Castello Cities Internet Network, suffered for five days with severe symptoms. The LA County health department sent Castello a letter, recommending he undergo several diagnostic tests, including chest x-rays.

Legionella pneumophila bacteria are usually found in warm water. Hot tubs and other warm water areas are seen as a breeding ground of Legionnaire’s disease causing bacteria, according to health officials. According to news reports, the Playboy Mansion’s infamous grotto is an area officials plan to examine for bacteria. The bacteria is not spread from person from person, but is inhaled in warm water vapor, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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