« New Developments... | Main | Saturday Morning... »

Whooping Cough

Posted by Mary Richards on November 2, 2005 at 08:53 AM | Permalink

I reported this morning that health officials are noticing a huge rise in whooping cough cases in Utah. First the funny news: during my 7:30 live hit I almost started to cough! I made the mistake of eating some leftover halloween candy a few minutes before going live, and a piece caught in my throat. My eyes were watering and to my ears my voice sounded more strained than pasta.

But the story itself isn't funny. To me, with a three-month-old baby, it's scary to think there could be more cases of whooping cough out there for him to catch. One health official told me there are 450 cases reported this year, compared to 155 last year. She says that may be just more people coming in and getting tested and diagnosed. But that's a large increase. She says she's concerned about more people who are chosing not to immunize their children against the disease. She says the vaccine that children get in phases eventually wears off, so there is a new vaccine one that teens can get. Health officials say in teens and adults, it seems more like a bad cough, but it could kill a baby.

Everyone tells me that new moms are more paranoid and protective with their first child, and will relax more as they have other children. But I'm still going to make sure I and other people wash their hands before they pick him up! I'm already worried about the flu and common cold this winter. I don't want to have to worry about whooping cough.


True there is an increase in Pertussis aka. "Whooping Cough". The DPT (Diptheria, Pertussis, Tetanus) shot frequently given in the past, to informed parents, seems to have a shelf life of around 10 years before a booster is required. Pertussis is back and making a run in High Schools in Colorado. Colorado is now legislating that all entering freshmen students must have the new DPAT shot prior to attending high school. In fact my 12 year old daughter was requested to have one prior to entering Jr. High school here in Colorado. A pediatric radiologist friend of mine is currently infected and is wearing a HEPA (High Efficiency PArticulate) mask around his family... especially his one month old daughter because the exposure comes from particulates when coughing. Hand washing is always a good idea but covering the mouth is also a neccesity. Kaiser Permanente requests anyone entering one of their facilities, that may have a Flu and/or other virus, wear a mask.

Posted by: E. Franks | Nov 11, 2005 8:52:30 PM

The comments to this entry are closed.