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Pertussis - whooping cough<h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​About​​​​​​​</h2><p>Pertussis, also known as whooping cough, is a highly infectious, disease that can be prevented with vaccines.<br></p> <span> <h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​How is pertussis transmitted?​​​​​​​<br></h2></span> <p>When an infected person coughs or sneezes, nearby people can easily breathe in the bacteria. </p> <span> <h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Who is at risk?<br></h2></span> <p>It can affect people of any age, however the following people are at high risk for infection and severe disease or death:</p><ul><li>Unvaccinated or partially vaccinated babies and young children</li><li>Babies younger than six months old </li><li>People with a weakened immune system and those with chronic lung disease.</li></ul> <span> <h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Prevention​​​​​​​</h2></span> <p>Pertussis can be prevented by getting vaccinated. In South Africa, children are usually vaccinated at 6, 10 and 14 weeks of age, in combination with other vaccines, and get a booster dose at 18 months. Over time, immunity after vaccination decreases, so we recommend a booster vaccination between the ages of 4 and 8, to maintain protection. </p> <span> <h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Signs and symptoms​​​​​​</h2></span> <p>Pertussis can cause a range of symptoms that can vary from person to person. The disease starts slowly and can either be mild or severe. Symptoms can usually appear between 7 and 10 days after exposure to the bacteria, but the disease can start from 5 to 21 days after exposure. </p><p>Initial signs and symptoms are similar to a cold and may include:</p><ul><li>blocked or runny nose;</li><li>sneezing;</li><li>sore throat; <br></li><li>dry cough that becomes worse after a few days and bursts of coughs are followed by a whooping sound; </li><li>a worse cough at night, followed by vomiting after coughing; and</li><li>no or minimal fever. </li></ul><p>Babies may not cough, but they may struggle to breath, or stop breathing and have a bluish discolouration of the skin. </p><p>Teenagers and adults who were previously vaccinated may only have a persistent cough.</p> <span> <h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Treatment​​​​​​​</h2></span> <p>Your medical practitioner will advise on the treatment, however antibiotics are usually effective in reducing the infectious period.</p><p>If a case of pertussis is diagnosed, people who have been in close contact with the patient must go to the nearest clinic or doctor for treatment. </p> <span> <h2 class="sectHeading">​​​​​​​​​​Contact us​​​​​​​<br></h2></span> <p>For more information, contact your nearest <a href="">clinic or healthcare facility</a>.</p><p>If you find yourself in an emergency situation, contact <strong>107</strong> from a landline, or<em> </em> <a> <em>021 480 7700</em></a> from a cellphone.</p><p> <br> </p>GP0|#afbe362f-87dd-40e0-922f-4f4da624606b;L0|#0afbe362f-87dd-40e0-922f-4f4da624606b|Pertussis (Whooping Cough);GTSet|#ef3a64a2-d764-44bc-9d69-3a63d3fadea1;GPP|#d65ab879-2884-426b-a380-7b8f9433c812;GPP|#090e430c-3809-42d5-a80b-caea93b2beaf;GPP|#245ec7aa-a528-4cd3-bcac-597c292db711Pertussis is a highly infectious, but preventable disease.0





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