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What Is Pertussis Disease

In recent years, there has been an upsurge in the number of pertussis cases reported.
However, you should know that whooping cough is a cyclical disease with a frequency of 3-4 years, the last epidemic of pertussis had been responsible for the death of France 9 children in 2000.

Given this increase, the Institute for Public Health Surveillance attracts the attention of physicians and their demand the utmost vigilance. Because we know that it is a highly contagious disease, which can infect all ages and be very severe and even fatal for infants not yet immunized.

In the world and according to WHO sources about 300 000 deaths are attributed to him (according to the OS), making whooping a major public health.

The pertussis?
Pertussis is a highly contagious disease; the causative agent is. Contamination occurs between individuals by air: they are water droplets expelled (sneezing, coughing) which spread bacteria from the mouth, nose or throat of an infected person.

Symptoms appear between six and 21 days (average 7-10) after exposure to the bacteria.

At any age!
In non-vaccinated contamination occurs from child to child while in the country vaccinated, it is adult to infant.

Pertussis can occur at any age, but it is among young children whom the consequences will be more serious (especially young children who are not immunized or during immunization) .

Recent studies have shown that adolescents and older children may be carriers of the disease, it is difficult to recognize from the beginning.
What are the symptoms?

Pertussis often begins so little evocative unnoticed because of signs minor colds, mild fever, dry cough, predominantly nocturnal. These symptoms can last up to two weeks and the appearance of a persistent cough (sometimes for more than three weeks) manifested by severe coughing associated with difficulty breathing during and after coughing, causing cyanosis (redness face, swollen eyes) and characteristic whistling during inspiration, called "whooping cough" ( e.g. cough).

There are also coughing, vomiting (cough usually produces a thick mucus). Fever, if present, is not very important.

The complications:
In infants, respiratory problems (sometimes the lips and nails turning blue due to lack of oxygen) can cause pulmonary complications (pneumonia) and neurological (seizure, encephalitis), which can be fatal.

Other possible complications: otitis media, anorexia and dehydration.
After 3 weeks, the cough decreased but some symptoms may persist for a few months.

The treatment:
It relies on taking cough suppressants and antibiotics. It can combine their antispasmodic and sedative and antipyretic needed.

The Prevention:
By vaccination: from two months, the baby can be vaccinated three injections one month apart are performed, followed by a return to the first 16-18 months and a second at 11-13 years.

There is no definitive protection against pertussis immunization is the best preventive measure for your child, but like the protection gained unfortunately it only lasts a few years, and the majority of adults is no longer protected against the disease. This is why it is recommended for parents to get vaccinated.

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