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Grayslake, IL 60030

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Posts for tag: Whooping Cough

By Mundelein Pediatrics
February 06, 2019
Category: Child's Health
Tags: Whooping Cough  

Named after the characteristic sound of its notorious coughing fits, whooping cough is an extraordinarily uncomfortable condition that typically manifests itself in babies and in children ages 11 to 18 whose vaccine-provided immunities have begun to fade. In addition to causing several debilitating symptoms, whooping cough also carries the possibility of infant mortality, particularly for patients under 12 months old. Further complicating the matter, initial symptoms often resemble a common cold, making quick detection a tricky task. To be more proactive in the treatment and prevention of this disease, read below to learn the basics on whooping cough and how to best go about alleviating it.

What is Whooping Cough?

Officially diagnosed by the name pertussis, whooping cough is a highly contagious bacterial infection that resides within the nose and throat. Whooping cough is spread through airborne bacteria produced by an infected person’s sneezes, coughs, or laughs. Once whooping cough has been contracted, the apparent symptoms begin in an identical fashion to the common cold. That includes:

  • Runny nose

  • Mild cough

  • Fever (below 102 F)

  • Congestion and sneezing

After a week to 10 days, these symptoms begin to grow worse. Mucus thickens and starts to coat the patient’s airways, leading to rampant and prolonged coughing. These fits can be so violent that that they may cause vomiting, lengthy periods of extreme fatigue, and result in blue or red face. This last sign is the direct outcome of the body’s struggle to fill the lungs with air, and once breathing is finally achieved, the loud “whooping” sound that defines the condition is produced.

What are the Dangers of the Disease?

If left untreated, whooping cough can produce a number of painful and dangerous complications, with the specific ailments depending on the age of the patient.

For teens and adults, untreated whooping cough can result in:

  • Abdominal hernias

  • Bruised or cracked ribs

  • Broken blood vessels in the skin and whites of the eyes

For infants, complications from whooping cough are a great deal more severe. They include:

  • Pneumonia

  • Slowed or stopped breathing

  • Feeding difficulties, which may lead to dehydration and severe weight loss

  • Seizures

  • Brain damage

What Can I Do About It?

The best approach to preventing the disease is through vaccination. This is especially important for babies, as whooping cough leaves them in significant danger, though it is essential to keep your children on regular vaccination schedules, regardless of their individual age.

While vaccines are extremely effective in reducing the likelihood of contracting whooping cough, the possibility of developing the condition is still present. Due to this perpetual risk, if you witness your child’s cold symptoms continuing to worsen, arrange an appointment with their local pediatrician to find out if the problem may be whooping cough. If diagnosed early enough, antibiotics can be used to cut down on the painful symptoms and prevent the infection from spreading to others.

Concerned? Give Us a Call

Whooping cough is a serious condition that can be extremely dangerous if left untreated. If you have any suspicions that your child may have developed this condition, give us a call today!

By Mundelein Pediatrics
October 05, 2018
Category: Health Conditions
Tags: Whooping Cough  

What's one of most dangerous diseases to threaten young children? It's whooping cough, or pertussis, a severe bacterial infection of the respiratory tract. At Mundelein Pediatrics in Grayslake, IL your team of six board-certified pediatricians treat pertussis and monitor children for its serious complications. They also urge children, parents, and grandparents to be up to date on their vaccines as prevention Child Coughingof whooping cough is the best medicine.

Just what is whooping cough?

It affects the respiratory tract, causing long-lasting and severe symptoms like:

  • Hard, spasmodic, and noisy coughing
  • Runny nose
  • Gasping for breath
  • Episodic cessation of breathing (apnea)
  • Poor appetite
  • Dehydration
  • Fever
  • Maiaise
  • Extreme fatigue

Symptoms may last 10 weeks or more, and in infants and toddlers may require hospitalization. While people of all ages may develop whooping cough, infants are most prone because of their underdeveloped immune systems.

Treating whooping cough

Bed rest, bedroom humidification, and pushing fluids helps. Fever should be controlled with over the counter acetaminophen, and your pediatrician in Grayslake may prescribe antibiotics. Because pertussis spreads easily via respiratory droplets and person to person contact, infected persons should stay away from young or frail individuals.

In severe cases, babies and toddlers may need to be hospitalized to monitor their vital signs closely. IV medications and fluids to combat dehydration may be administered as well.

At Mundelein Pediatrics, your children's doctors firmly believe that vaccination with the DTaP (diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis) shot is critical to avoiding this potentially deadly infection. Parents, grandparents, teachers, and anyone who works closely with children should update their pertussis Immunizations with their primary care physicians.

Finally, community (or herd) immunity is an important medical reality. Immunizations administered according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and American Academy of Pediatric guidelines protect entire populations. Over time, childhood diseases can (and have been) eradicated with faithful adherence to vaccination schedules. Prevention really is the best medicine for whooping cough and other serious medical problems.

Learn more

Please contact your pediatrician at Mundelein Pediatrics in Grayslake, IL, with any questions about whooping cough, vaccines, treatment, or if you think your child is exhibiting symptoms. We have ample office hours, including Sunday and walk-in availability. Call (847) 548-7337.