Whooping Cough: 17 cases in Taylor County - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Whooping Cough: 17 cases in Taylor County

WAUSAU (WAOW)--Taylor County health leaders report 17 cases of Whooping Cough since October 1, 2011. They had none for the year prior to that date.

  The health department sent out an alert to medical providers and schools to make them aware of the situation, so they can watch for potential cases.

  The Medford School District says it has sent letters home to parents who have children in classrooms where they may have come in contact with infected persons.  Medford Administrator, Pat Sullivan, says they are also asking teachers to temporarily  limit extended face-to-face contact in the elementary school classrooms. That way if children are sick or exposed, they won't spread the disease to others. 

 The Wisconsin Division of Public Health says the disease is spread by coughing and is usually most serious in infants and young children. It may begin with cold like symptoms, fever and a cough. In more serious cases, fits of coughing develop which may last for weeks or months. Sometimes it interferes with breathing, eating and sleeping. In the worst cases, pneumonia, seizures, brain damage or death can occur.

  A 5 dose vaccine is available called DTap. For more information:www.cdc.gov

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