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Whooping Cough On Pace For Most Cases In 50+ Years

07/20/12

  10:37:32 am, by MedBen5   , 164 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

Whooping Cough On Pace For Most Cases In 50+ Years

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warn that 2012 will probably experience the highest number of whooping cough cases since 1959, USA Today reports.

Known formally as pertussis, whooping cough is a highly contagious bacterial disease that is particularly dangerous to infants and young children. It results in severe coughing that causes children to make a distinctive whooping sound.

As of July, almost 18,000 cases have been reported – over twice as many at this point last year. Public health officials theorize that a switch in vaccine types 15 years ago may be partially responsible for the increase.

While most infants are vaccinated against the disease, only 8.2% of adults are – and they are the one most lilkely to infect infants, said Anne Schuchat, director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases.

In addition to ensuring infants and young children receive the tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis vaccine, CDC also recommends that adults get a booster shot every 10 years. Women should also get vaccinated before or early in pregnancy.

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