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Whooping Cough

Whooping cough, a bacterial infection in childhood is caused by the bacterium Bordetalla pertussis. The bacteria is highly infectious and is found in the mouth, nose and throat of an infected child. Infection is spread by inhalation of airborne drops coughed out by the infected persons. It can be very serious for children under 2 years of age.  But there is effective vaccination against this dissease so the incidence and severity of the disease has been lessened.  

The disease begins with a cold and a mild cough and effects the respiratory tract and the lungs. After this,  continual coughing bouts which lasts up to one minute sets in. At the end of each coughing bout, the child draws in the breath with a characteristic whooping sound. Coughing attacks may occur up to 40 times a day, and is often worse at night. After about two weeks the symptoms begin to subside although the cough may persist for 6-10 weeks. 

The incubation period (the time between contracting the infection and the appearance of the main symptoms) of the disease is usually one to three weeks. The early symptoms of whooping cough are similar to a cold. Other symptoms may include :  

  • A runny nose

  • Sore, watery eyes

  • Poor appetite 

  • Coughing bouts

  • Whooping sound when breathing in between coughing bouts

  • Fever & diarrhoea 

  • Lips, tongue, and nails may turn blue during coughing spells

  • Nose bleed & vomiting after the cough

Adverse effects
Whooping cough attacks can be distressing for both the child and parents. Complications from whooping cough may include damage to the tiny air sacs and airways in the lungs which may lead to asthma, ear infections, broncho - pneumonia or convulsions. Other serious complications include rupture of blood vessels in the brain (cerebral haemorrhage) or eye, retinal detachment caused violent coughing, tuberculosis and inflammation of the brain. Severe complications can result in permanent brain damage or death.

The diagnosis is usually made from the symptoms and in case of contact with a person suffering from whooping cough. Swabs from the nose and throat are taken for analysis for confirmation of the disease.

Most cases of whooping cough require no specific treatment. Antibiotics are not recommended except for infants and patients who have other complications. Treatment is usually by means of bed rest, pain relief and plenty of drinks. The patient should be kept isolated from others. Very severe cases should be treated in hospital. 

Whooping  cough can be prevented by means of vaccination. This is a combined vaccination against diphtheria, pertussis (whooping cough), tetanus and hib (dpt/hib) which is usually given at the age of 2, 3 and 4 months. There is also a booster at 18 months and at 4-6 years of age. The vaccination may cause fever, redness and swelling in the injected area which may last upto one or two days. Rarely whooping cough can occur in spite of taking the vaccination. But these attacks will be mild.

It is advisable that all children should be vaccinated against whooping cough, as it is important to prevent this dangerous disease.

Questions of
 Questions & Answers
 1.  Posted on : 6.7.2015  By  :  H B Nagle , Nagpur View Answer (0) Post Answer

My son akshay has been suffering from hydocele for last one year. His one testis is increasing. one more thing is that he is suffering from hemangioma by birth and after two years of his birth hydrocele and tonsils are the new diseases arises

 2.  Posted on : 20.5.2014  By  :  Arav Gagan , Ranchi View Answer (1) Post Answer

I want to 01 Years old baby Vaccine chart ex. Pneumonia, Hepatitis A, Chicken Pocks, Flu. 1.Pneumonia Patient Baby 2. DOB-02/04/2013


These are the reccommendations for immunization by Indian peadiatric associations 1. Hepatitis A - 1 dose (12 Months) , 2 Dose (24 Months) Pnumococcus Vaccination - 1 Dose (1 1/2 Months) 2 Dose (2 1/2 months) 3 Dose - (3 1/2 months) Chickenpox Vaccination 1 Dose - 15 months 2 Dose - 4- 6 years Influence Vaccination - Every Year Check the link for more details Please consult your peadiatrician for further Advise

  Posted By :Admin , Kochi | On 26.5.2014
 3.  Posted on : 27.1.2014  By  :  Vaishnavi , Chennai View Answer (1) Post Answer

Hi thanks for the above information and I am having two more question first one is we can use citric acid regularly for new born baby second my son body over heat what I want to do become normal


You should not use citric acid on a new born baby. Your son probably is a normal active one year old, if you are concerned, please consult a pediatrician.

  Posted By :Admin , | On 26.5.2014
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