What is it?

Pertussis – commonly known as whooping cough – is a highly infectious bacterial disease caused by Bordetella Pertussis bacteria

It is a serious illness in babies and young children

What are the symptoms?

Sneezing, runny nose, mild fever and a cough

After 1-2 weeks the cough gradually worsens into coughing attacks that can last for up to a minute

These attacks recur over a period of 6-12 weeks

Pertussis can be serious in infants and young children

Complications may include pneumonia, convulsions and brain damage

The first symptoms of pertussis begin about 6-10 after infection

How can I contract it?

You can get pertussis when the bacteria comes into contact with your mouth or nose (for example when someone who has pertussis coughs or sneezes near you and you inhale the droplets)

You can also become infected by getting the droplets on your hands and then touching your nose or mouth

Where can I contract pertussis?

Pertussis is a common disease that occurs year-round throughout the world

The World Health Organization estimates that 95% of pertussis cases occur in developing countries

What vaccines are available?

Beginning at 2 months of age, Canadian children receive a series of combination vaccines and boosters that provide immunity from pertussis, tetanus, diphtheria (TdaP) and other diseases

Will I need a booster?


A one-time TdaP booster is now recommended for all adults

How can I prevent pertussis?

Parents are encouraged to make sure their children receive the pertussis vaccine as part of the normal childhood vaccine series and again at school entry and in grade 9 in BC schools

What is the treatment?

Antibiotics can help speed recovery from pertussis and reduce the contagious period

Family members may also be given preventive antibiotics

People who have pertussis should be isolated from infants and young children while they are contagious

There is no treatment to relieve the coughing attacks

"The Burnaby location has very nice staff that makes your less than fun stay much better (who likes being stuck by one or more needles). They give vaccinations for basically anything that you could need wile out travelling the world. "
Mike G - Yelp