Do I have whooping cough?

By | January 20, 2009

I am annoyed by how long I’ve been sick now. I’ve had some germ since just after Christmas. Is anyone else going through this?

The timing and symptoms fit the Whooping cough (pertussis) outbreak, but I’m in California, not Michigan where there is an outbreak. Oh, also 14 cases in Minnesota recently. And New Jersey.  And southern Maine. And New Hampshire. And Idaho.

“It’s a respiratory illness that basically gives you a cough for 100 days...”

Pertussis, commonly known as “whooping cough,” is a highly contagious and potentially serious infection of the respiratory tract is caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis. …

Pertussis is treated with antibiotics, usually with erythromycin or azithromycin. Antibiotic treatment is most effective when started early in the course of the illness but does not always alter the disease outcome. However, antibiotics do shorten the infectious period so they are also very important in stopping the spread of pertussis bacteria from the infected person to other people. – medem

I did take a course of azithromycin, and I felt much better for a few days after the 5 day course, but then the cough returned. As this says, I’m probably not very contagious any longer, but the cough still has to run its course. How long will that be?

Pertussis lasts for several weeks or longer. There are usually two weeks of common cold symptoms, followed by two weeks of severe coughing, followed by two weeks of a convalescent period when coughing occurs less often. In some children, the convalescent stage may last for months. – medem

Investigation into the origin of the cases suggests that the current outbreak of whooping cough started before the recent holidays. Whooping cough is a contagious respiratory illness that starts like a cold with a runny nose and sore throat. After seven to 10 days the cold turns into a cough that gradually worsens. The cough will last up to two months. The incidence of whooping cough had declined dramatically with the introduction of the whooping cough vaccine. However, whooping cough outbreaks have grown in number in recent years. People with a persistent cough or people living with a person with a cough should contact their family doctor. The treatment for whooping cough is a course of antibiotics. People are usually not contagious after taking antibiotics for five days. There is also a new vaccine for adolescents and adults for the prevention of whooping cough. – themorn

… Whooping cough usually begins with a cold, runny nose and low-grade fever 10-14 days after exposure to the infection, according to the letter. That’s accompanied by a cough that gets worse over a week or two. That’s when the “severe coughing spells” begin, which include a long series of coughs and, sometimes, a loud whooping sound. The coughing spells are sometimes followed by gagging, vomiting or difficulty catching breath and often get worse at night. That stage can last anywhere from a week to more than a month. “It makes you quite sick and the cough can last for weeks,” Montero said.- nash

4 thoughts on “Do I have whooping cough?

  1. Emma

    Yeah, I’m in Australia, 18, and have been immunised to whopping cough. but for some reason i still have this. The doctor told me it was just Bronchitis and gave me 2 lots of anitbiotics for it. Instead, it hasn’t helped and i’ve had this terrible cough since early april. It is now approaching june.

    Its worse in the morning and night time when the air is cold and no matter how much i try to rug up and take care of myself, i get these terrible breathing troubles. what do i do? Go back to the doctor? They didn’t listen to my worries in the first place…

    1. Xeno Post author

      Hi Emma,
      I’m not a doctor so this is not medical advice, just my view: Go to another doctor right away and get some tests. You should not be sick for two months. There are many things you should be tested for. They should do blood tests and chest X-rays at the very least. What antibiotics were you on and for how long?

      Whatever you decide to do, start taking Vitamin D right away 1000 units a day to start with and 100 mcg of Vitamin K along with it. Worked for me.

      That should help your lungs heal quickly. Vitamin C, 2000 mg per day too!

      Good luck. I hope you feel better soon.

  2. Stacey

    Hi Emma,
    I have Whooping Cough. Let me tell you, you will know if you have Whooping Cough. I never got the Pre-cold symptoms, ie, running nose, sneezing, sore throat. Mine just started with an extremely mild cough. Then each day it progressed sounded more like Bronchitis. Then the cough got severe… Undescribable. It is worse at night, sometimes I cannot NOT catch my breath. My lower abdomen was very sore from coughing so much at night. During the day the cough is much better. My doctor took an x-ray thinking possible pneumonia, which was negative. My blood results Sed Rate was extremely high. I demanded my Dr. test me for Whooping Cough. He assured me I did NOT have it, until the results came back positive. He put me on the Z-Pack (5 day). According to the local Health Dept. after completing the 5 day course of Antibotics I am no longer contagious, however I still have the cough. I never got a fever (one day 99.6) I believe it was from the heat. Also, I feel normal in between coughing.
    Tip: I have found that when I have a severe coughing spell, I try not to panic and for a second breath thru my nose. It helps.
    Good Luck and I hope you get well soon!

    1. Larry

      THANK GOD, Yuo sound like me from mid March, no symptoms except a cough that got worse, its getting better but even today if I laugh or suck air down my throat wrong the coughing starts. I have not been tested, but my doctor and pulmaonary specialist say its a virus, and I and still using Veramist, and Aristocort. Previous to this I was on 2 different antibiotics, 2 regiments of predinose, and an Albutoural inhaler.

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