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Can I develop whooping cough (pertussis) as an adult?

Dr. Darria Long Gillespie, MD
Emergency Medicine
You can develop whooping cough, or pertussis, as an adult, although the symptoms may be different. In this video, I will explain that this vaccine does require a booster every 10 years.

Yes, you can develop whooping cough as an adult. The vaccine series you received as a child may no longer be effective. If you are concerned about being exposed to whooping cough, ask your doctor if you have received a booster shot for whooping cough recently. If you think you have been exposed, talk to your doctor about taking antibiotics.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.