A printout for your doctor
Information for doctors
Whooping cough – Doctor to doctor.
Whooping cough is best recognised by hearing or seeing a whooping cough paroxysm. I therefore recommend that possible sufferers record a paroxysmal episode and show it to their doctor. Seeing or hearing is believing!
The majority don’t ‘whoop’. Most cases go unrecognised because the patient looks well, there are no physical signs and you never hear them cough.
Most labs can now do simple blood test for pertussis toxin IgG. Ask for “pertussis antibodies” at least 2 weeks into the illness. PCR can be done on a dry throat swab any time in the first few weeks. Oral fluid tests are also done after 2 weeks.
WHO clinical diagnosis requires 3 weeks of paroxysmal coughing only.
Each year, 13% of adults get a subclinical or asymptomatic pertussis infection.
Each year up to 6% of adults get a symptomatic (but mild and atypical) pertussis infection, usually undiagnosed. Immunity from natural infection only lasts about 10 years.
Any doctor is welcome to phone me.
Dr Doug Jenkinson, Gotham, Nottingham England. +44 7584036300