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Whooping Cough Outbreak in Sacramento

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Sacramento County is experiencing a Pertussis outbreak, according to Health Officer, Dr. Olivia Kasirye. So far, the County has confirmed 69 cases for 2014, compared to 59 total cases in calendar year 2013.

Of the 69 cases, 11 of those are children one-year-of-age, or younger. Three are adults over the age of 18. Many are teenagers.

There is usually no fever with whooping cough. Common cold symptoms often develop over a two-week period. A cough followed by a loud gasp ("whoop") may develop, but sometimes children may not experience coughing. But, they can become short-of-breath quickly, gasp, gag, vomit, turn red, blue or purple in the face. They should see a doctor as soon as possible.

Dr. Kasirye recommends the Pertussis vaccination to reduce the risk, but would also like to remind the public that if a person has been exposed to Pertussis, or if one works in environments including children, such as schools, daycare centers, and health care centers, vaccination is especially necessary.

People can carry and transmit the infection without displaying symptoms. Children are especially vulnerable and may die from Pertussis.

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