Patient Education

Billings OBGYN

Your Health, Our Passion

Pertussis, also known as Whooping Cough, is a highly contagious disease and can cause serious illness in infants, children and adults. It is the only vaccine preventable disease that has been associated with a growing number of deaths in the United States since the 1980’s.

The disease starts much like a common cold with congestion, sneezing, runny nose, and maybe a mild cough or fever. Within one to two weeks, severe coughing can begin and may continue for months. Pertussis can cause violent and rapid coughing until the air is gone from the lungs and you are forced to inhale with a loud “whooping” sound. While the distinct whooping sound is generally heard in children’s cases, it is not as common in adults.

Pertussis can result in serious complications including uncontrollable coughing fits that are severe enough to cause rib fractures, vomiting, and even pneumonia. Infants under 12 months of age are particularly at risk for Pertussis and often contract the disease from parents or siblings.

The Tdap vaccine, which stands for Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis, is the only type of combination vaccine that helps protect adults and adolescents from all 3 of these diseases. Even though you may have received the Pertussis vaccine as a child, these vaccines can fade over time and it is recommended that people ages 11 – 64 be revaccinated to ensure complete protection.

Billings OB-GYN Associates is pleased to provide Tdap vaccinations for our patients. Contact us to learn more about Tdap and find out if you and your family should consider being vaccinated. Our physicians will help you make the best decision to protect your wellbeing.

Douglas Neuhoff, MD Billings OB-GYN Associates