Complications in teens and adults can include weight loss and inability to control urine. Rarely, fainting or rib fractures can occur from severe coughing.
You will be asked about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done.
Your body fluids may be tested. This can be done with:
Treatment may include:
Pertussis is treated with antibiotics, which keeps the infection from spreading. They are most effective when started in the early stages. They will usually not improve the symptoms or otherwise affect the illness.
Treatment of Symptoms
Antibiotics or cough medications do not prevent coughing. The following steps may help control symptoms and prevent complications:
Get plenty of rest.
Use a cool mist vaporizer to loosen mucus and soothe the respiratory tract.
Avoid irritants that trigger coughing, such as smoke or aerosol sprays.
Drink plenty of fluids.
This may be necessary for those who develop severe infections. People with pertussis are usually isolated to prevent spreading the disease to others.
The best way to prevent pertussis is with a vaccine. All children (with few exceptions) should receive the DTaP
series. This protects against
tetanus, and pertussis. Another vaccine called Tdap is routinely given to children aged 11-12 after they have completed the DTaP series of shots. There are also catch-up schedules for children and adults who have not been fully vaccinated.
Pregnant women should have a dose of Tdap during every pregnancy to protect newborns from pertussis.
People in close contact with someone infected with pertussis may be advised to take preventive antibiotics, even if they've been vaccinated. This is especially important in households with members at high risk for severe disease such as children under 1 year of age or people with weak immune systems.
Pertussis (whooping cough). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/pertussis. Updated August 7, 2017. Accessed February 15, 2018.
Tdap vaccine. What you need to know Centers for Disease control and Prevention website. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/tdap.pdf. Updated February 24, 2015. Accessed February 15, 2018.
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