How common is whooping cough (pertussis)?

Reported cases of pertussis (whooping cough) vary from year to year and tend to peak every three to five years. More than 48,000 cases of pertussis were reported across the United States during 2012, including 20 deaths. The majority of deaths occur among infants younger than 3 months of age.

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Whooping cough used to be quite common in the United States. However, with the creation of a vaccine it is better controlled now. Every two to four years, outbreaks occur among people who are not immunized. Many cases occur among young children who have not received the entire series of vaccinations.

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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

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.