MYTHS AND FACTS: Whooping cough

December 2002 
Volume 32  Number 12
Pages 83 - 83
  PDF Version Available!

© 2002 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc. Volume 32(12)             December 2002             p 83 …About whooping cough [MYTHS AND FACTS]


Becky Lien Munson is nursing supervisor at the Washington School for the Deaf in Vancouver, Wash. Selected references for this article are available on request.

MYTH: Whooping cough is an influenza-like viral infection.

FACT: Whooping cough, or pertussis, is an acute bacterial infection of the respiratory tract caused by Bordetella pertussis , a Gram-negative aerobic coccobacillus. The bacterium has an incubation period of 6 to 21 days (7 to 10 days is typical).

MYTH: Children no longer need to be vaccinated against whooping cough because it was eradicated worldwide by vaccination.

FACT: Incidence of whooping cough in the United States dropped after the pertussis vaccine was developed in the 1940s, ...

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