Now, let's talk about pertussis.
Pertussis, also known as whooping cough,
is a highly contagious respiratory disease.
It is caused by the bacterium
Pertussis can cause problems
for a really long time.
The symptoms can last for at least 10 weeks.
It can cause uncontrollable,
and since it's a bacterial disease,
we can treat it with antibiotics.
Pertussis is vaccine-preventable.
In infants and young children, the
DTaP vaccine is given at the 2-month,
4-month, 6-month, 15-18 month, and
the 4-5 year well child checks.
Older children and adults will
be boosted with a TDaP vaccine
that also contains pertussis,
or whooping cough, coverage.
<i>Bordetella pertussis</i> is a fastidious,
gram-negative bacterium requiring
a special media for isolation.
It's a very contagious disease,
spread from person to person
by coughing or sneezing, or even
just sharing a breathing space.
The droplets that contain
the <i>Bordetella pertussis</i>
bacteria can be spread up to 6
feet,and can live on surfaces,
like counter tops and doorknobs for days.
Many babies who get pertussis are infected
by older siblings, parents, or caregivers,
who may not even know that
they have this disease yet.
Infected people are most
contagious from the onset,
through about the first 3 weeks after
the start of the paroxysmal coughing.
Antibiotics may shorten the amount
of time that someone is contagious,
but it will not take away their cough.
So pertussis is a primarily
This means the gram-negative pertussis
bacteria droplets will enter your patient
and attach to the cilia of the
respiratory epithelial cells.
The bacteria are going to produce multiple
antigenic and biologically active toxins
and products that cause damage to the cilia,
and they cause these airways to swell.
Now, this makes it hard for the patients
to clear their pulmonary secretions
because there's inflammation
and decreased ciliary action,
and the infection can further invade
down into the surrounding tissues.