Whooping Cough Vaccine in Fremont
More commonly known as whooping cough, pertussis disease is a contagious
respiratory disease caused by a bacterium known as Bordetella pertussis.
This sickness is especially dangerous and threatening to infants. Symptoms
of pertussis disease include sneezing, congestion, and a runny nose, as
well as its most recognizable symptom, a violent cough that makes a “whooping”
sound—the origin of the illness’ more familiar name. While
whooping cough can be treated by antibiotics, it is preventable with a
safe and effective vaccine. Pertussis in infants can be fatal.
What Causes Whooping Cough?
Whooping cough occurs when a type of bacteria—Bordetella pertussis—attaches to the cilia in the upper respiratory system. The cilia
are small, hair-like protrusions. The bacterium expels toxins that hurt
the cilia and makes airways swell.
Pertussis is spread by contact with an infected individual. Usually this
occurs through coughing or sneezing in a shared breathing area. An infant
may contract the disease from an infected relative, sibling, or parent
who does not even know he or she is infected. No vaccine is completely
effective, so even a vaccinated person can catch whooping cough if he
/ she is exposed to an infected person.