California Experiencing Whooping Cough Epidemic

More than 800 new cases have been reported in the last two weeks.

Getty Images
Getty Images
California is currently experiencing a whooping cough epidemic, according to the California Department of Public Health.
Public health officials said more than 800 new cases of pertussis, also known as whooping cough, have been reported in the last two weeks. Some 3,458 cases of whooping cough had been reported to the health department this year as of June 10 - more cases than were reported in all of 2013, according to department officials.

Health officials said whooping cough is cyclical and that cases peak every three to five years. The last peak was in 2010, so this year could be another peak year, officials say.
Infants and young children are most vulnerable to whooping cough. Symptoms vary by age but include a cough and runny nose for one or two weeks. The cough then worsens and children may experience rapid coughing spells that end with a "whooping" sound. In infants, symptoms may not include an apparent cough, but could include episodes in which the child's face turns red or purple.
In adults, symptoms may include a persistent cough for several weeks.

—By Bay City News
Jennifer McGaffey June 16, 2014 at 12:07 PM
The problem isn't those who are unvaccinated - well, yeah, they get it too. But they can also transmit it to children too young to get the vaccine - who are the most likely to get a very bad case, enough to die of it. Herd immunity is the only way to protect them, and every unvaccinated person is a hole in the herd immunity. Immigrants may be part of the problem, people choosing not to be vaccinated _are_ a part of the problem. So the missing data is more complex than William is suggesting - there are certainly more than 800 people who have not been vaccinated, many of whom have not gotten the disease. And some/many of the 800 may be children who could not yet have been vaccinated, but would have been safe if those around them had been vaccinated.
April June 16, 2014 at 05:49 PM
get a booster shot, adults, if you haven't already.
Nick June 16, 2014 at 06:21 PM
KPIX did a report last week about this, citing the affluent population in the North Bay as being one of the larger culprits of not having their kids vaccinated.
Ross Stapleton-Gray June 16, 2014 at 06:42 PM
I can personally attest that it's also possible to catch pertussis even if you've been vaccinated: our younger daughter developed it after being exposed to a classmate who'd gotten it (despite vaccination) and passed it to me (I'd had a booster in 2013). When her pediatrician examined her she prescribed azithromycin for the whole family, and three of the four of us have been symptomatic (and both my daughter and I tested positive). We're now deemed to be past the infection stage; still in the crappy cough stage... none of us got to the "can barely breathe" stage, but I'm getting headaches from all the coughing.
Susan June 16, 2014 at 09:57 PM
so sorry you are going through this


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