Thursday, January 5, 2012

Whooping cough cases double in past year to more than 1,000, United Kingdom

Cases of whooping cough have more than doubled in the last year - although peaks of this kind are normal, according to the Health Protection Agency (HPA).

Figures for England and Wales show there were 421 cases in 2010, jumping to 1,040 in 2011.

Increases in whooping cough are usually seen every three to four years and the 2011 data appears to be in line with the last peak in 2008, when there were 902 cases, the HPA said.

A vaccination programme exists for young children but over the last few months, cases have increased among those aged 15 to 40.

While whooping cough can cause nasty symptoms in adults, it does not usually cause any long-lasting complications and can be treated with antibiotics.

However, adults are more infectious than younger people and tend to spread the illness more easily.

In the very young, whopping cough can be a serious illness and can lead to death in some cases. Read More