Whooping cough is making its mark in the latest string of virus strains. There’s a commercial warning of the dangers of whooping cough aka Pertussi, and that adults pass this disease onto infants while holding them. The truth of the matter is whooping cough is passed from person through coughing and sneezing and, yes, infants are highly vulnerable but the adult has to have the disease in order for it to be transmitted. An infected adult or sibling of the infant can transmit whooping cough to the infant. Infants are the most infected group due their undeveloped immune system next to school-aged children 7 to 10 years old.
According to the CDC, “during 2012, increased pertussis cases or outbreaks were reported in a majority of states. As of January 10, 2013, 49 states and Washington, D.C. reported increases in disease in 2012 compared with 2011. In Ohio, 854 cases have been confirmed in Franklin County.
What are some of the symptoms of whooping cough: "the disease usually starts with cold-like symptoms and maybe a mild cough or fever. After 1 to 2 weeks, severe coughing can begin. Unlike the common cold, pertussis can become a series of coughing fits that continues for weeks. The CDC is presently recommending a pertussis booster at age 11 or 12, as research has found that the immunity from the five original vaccinations declines by that age. Ohio is one of 20 states that permit parents to refuse immunizations based upon some form of strong personal belief. It is unclear at this time if lack of immunizations is playing a part in the outbreak.” www.cdc.gov
If your baby or toddler develops a cold with a severe cough that is not going away, chances are it may be whooping cough and a doctor should be contacted immediately.