Does whooping cough (pertussis) affect children differently than adults?

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Whooping cough or pertussis can cause a very irritating cough that can last for months in adults. Some babies can be affected so badly by this cough that they may not get enough oxygen.  For this reason whooping cough is much more dangerous for babies and young children.

Whooping cough in children under the age of two years old is usually much more serious than whooping cough in teens or adults. Nearly all fatalities from this disease are children under six months of age. Young children often need to be hospitalized due to breathing difficulty. Many times they also need a tube inserted in the windpipe.

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Whooping Cough

Whooping Cough

If your child experiences uncontrollable coughing that makes it difficult for them to breathe, talk to your doctor about whooping cough. Thousands of people yearly become ill with whooping cough, which is also known as pertussis, ...

and some are hospitalized. This highly contagious illness can be very dangerous, and even deadly, in young infants. Thankfully, vaccines have helped to reduce the spread of whooping cough, although current vaccines are not 100% effective against this illness. If your child contracts this bacterial respiratory infection he or she will most likely be treated with antibiotics. To protect your children against whooping cough, talk to your doctor about vaccination
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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.