What's happening in 2014?
What is Pertussis?
Pertussis (whooping cough) disease is a very contagious disease of the lungs and respiratory system. It is caused by bacteria. Infants and young children are the most vulnerable, as well as pregnant women, infant caregivers and household members.
How is Pertussis Spread?
Pertussis or “whooping cough” is spread by tiny wet drops produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks. People with whooping cough can spread the disease from the time they get a runny nose until 3 weeks after their cough starts. People with whooping cough can prevent spreading the disease if they take the right antibiotics.
Older children and adults, including parents, often have mild disease. They can spread whooping cough and not know it. This is because they do not feel very sick so they do not see a doctor or get treated. People with whooping cough should get treated with antibiotics. They should avoid close contact with others, especially babies and pregnant women, until they have taken 5 days of the right antibiotics.