Pertussis, commonly known as whooping cough, is a highly contagious respiratory disease caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis. It primarily affects infants, young children, and unvaccinated individuals, with symptoms ranging from mild to severe.

The disease gets its name from the characteristic sound of coughing fits, which often end with a “whoop” as the person gasps for air. Other symptoms may include runny nose, sneezing, fever, and fatigue.

Pertussis is spread through respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The disease can be prevented through vaccination, which is recommended for infants, children, and adults.

If you suspect you or your child may have pertussis, it’s important to see a healthcare provider for diagnosis and treatment. Antibiotics may be prescribed to reduce symptoms and prevent the spread of the disease.

In conclusion, pertussis is a serious respiratory disease that can be prevented through vaccination and treated with antibiotics. By staying informed and taking appropriate precautions, we can all work together to protect ourselves and our communities from this highly contagious illness.