Acıbadem International Hospital Pediatric Health and Diseases Specialist Dr. Şeyma Ceyla Cüneydi said, “A person who ingested the whooping cough bacterium becomes infectious for an average of 21 days. Especially young children who are not vaccinated; It is more severely affected than vaccinated older children and adults. For this reason, it is very important that childhood vaccinations are not interrupted. " warns.
Although it can even cause fractures in the ribs due to difficult and severe coughing attacks, whooping cough is seen at all ages, but it carries a life-threatening risk especially for children. Moreover, its contagiousness is quite high. Stating that this disease, which can be easily transmitted due to droplets spreading from cough and sneezing, can be prevented by vaccination, Acıbadem International Hospital Pediatric Health and Diseases Specialist Dr. Şeyma Ceyla Cüneydi said, “A person who ingested the whooping cough bacterium becomes infectious for an average of 21 days. Especially young children who are not vaccinated; It is more severely affected than vaccinated older children and adults. For this reason, it is very important that childhood vaccinations are not interrupted. " warns.
It can also cause pneumonia
Whooping cough, which causes suffocating cough, draws attention as a highly contagious respiratory disease. Pertussis caused by Bordetella Pertusis bacteria is more common in underdeveloped countries. Stating that the number of cases reported worldwide in 2018 was 151 thousand. Şeyma Ceyla Cüneydi continues as follows:
“The only source of pertussis is human, ie it is transmitted from person to person. Although it is not a prominent season, it is more common in the autumn months. It starts with symptoms such as mild fever, runny nose and cough. However, there is a change in cough. It starts with a dry cough first, and then turns into a choking, sighing cough. Whooping cough starts in the upper respiratory tract and turns into lower respiratory tract disease by causing swelling and irritation in the lower respiratory tract when the bacteria reach the lungs. It rarely causes pneumonia, brain damage and seizures. "
The disease can spread over a long period of time
The disease is considered in three stages; The first symptoms appear within 7-10 days following the contamination of the bacteria. Noting that there are complaints similar to upper respiratory tract infection in the period called catarrhal period and lasting 1-2 weeks, Dr. Şeyma Ceyla Cüneydi states that the paroxysmal period with intense coughs continues for 2-4 weeks and that recovery takes 2-4 weeks.
Noting that it is easier to diagnose whooping cough in the cough period, Dr. Şeyma Ceyla Cüneydi said, “This is very prominent with coughing, but laboratory tests, culture, serology and PCR methods are used to diagnose those who have mild symptoms. The diagnosis is made by examining and culturing the swab taken from the back of the throat by entering through the nose, ”he says.
Vaccines should be repeated in adolescence
Stating that pertussis is a disease that can be prevented by vaccination, Dr. Şeyma Ceyla Cüneydi says: “Whooping cough vaccine is given when the baby is 2 months old, 4-6-18. is repeated in months. The whooping cough vaccine is also available in the 4-6 year old mixed vaccine. In particular, young children who are not vaccinated are more severely affected than vaccinated older children and adults. Vaccinated people experience either mild or atypical pertussis. However, it has been found that passing pertussis disease and vaccination during childhood do not provide lifelong immunity. It is known that 15-16 percent of spasmodic (spasm-like) coughs in adult or adolescence are pertussis. Therefore, it should be preferred to have whooping cough vaccine in the mixed vaccine between the ages of 10-14. "
When the new baby joins the family, the whooping cough vaccine is recommended for anyone who will take care of his or her care. Explaining that this is called the "cocoon strategy", Dr. Şeyma Ceyla Cüneydi said, “Thus, a wider protection against the disease is provided. In addition, giving pertussis vaccine to expectant mothers along with tetanus vaccine ensures the protection of the baby through antibodies transmitted from the mother. " he gives information.
Life threatening effects
The problems caused by whooping cough can be life threatening, especially in children. Pointing out that complications such as dehydration (excessive thirst), cerebral hemorrhage, pulmonary hypertension, anorexia (loss of appetite and related wasting), air leakage into the lungs, which we call pneumothorax, Dr. Şeyma Ceyla Cüneydi said, “Among the milder complications, we can count nosebleeds, hernias due to excessive pressure cough, incontinence, difficulty sleeping and ear inflammation, rectum sagging. Difficult and severe coughing can lead to fainting and even rib fractures. " says.
Antibiotic treatment is being applied
After the diagnosis of whooping cough, intensive treatment is required, especially in newborns, and the treatment process is also spent in the hospital. "Intense bouts of coughing can cause the baby to stop breathing and damage the brain." said Dr. Şeyma Ceyla Cüneydi notes that antibiotic treatment was applied at other ages and breath-opening drugs were given to alleviate intense coughing attacks.