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anyone heard of whooping cough in a vaccinated child?

My daughter has this horrible cough without any other symptoms (except an occasional sneeze). Her preschool teacher told me that her cough sounded just like another child's in her class who, her parents just found out, has whooping cough. Supposedly she would have been contagious a few weeks ago... Anyway, I feel like I'm just being paranoid since that teacher told me that... She was actually just seen by her doctor this morning for a flu shot (and my husband mentioned the cough but I guess she wasn't doing it much this morning). It has been getting worse through the day and during her nap (which only lasted about 30 minutes because she kept waking herself up with the cough), she was making weird wheezing sounds and having moments of apnea... I called the doc, who I think must think I'm crazy and paranoid, too, because she just saw her this morning and she seemed fine. What do you think? In my place would you have her tested?


Asked by EmilySusan at 2:26 PM on Dec. 8, 2009 in General Parenting

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This question is closed.
Answers (25)
  • I've seen a child who was vaccinated catch the Whooping Cough from his sister who could not be inoculated due to a seizure disorder. His bout was shorter and far less severe than his sister's. Whooping Cough circulates among the general population all the time and the risk is reduced but not eliminated for those who are vaccinated against it. Since I had been in contact with an active case, I was put on antibiotics to help prevent the spread of the disease any further, especially to those people who didn't get the shot for whatever reason (and there are many). Make sure your doctor knows that your daughter had an exposure to Pertussis in the last month. The symptoms (once they start) are a bit tricky from what I've seen. Seems like nothing and nothing and then suddenly it's wheezing and a violent cough that induces vomit. It's a very unpleasant illness so if there's a way to curtail it early, get it done.

    Answer by Nonoluna at 5:11 PM on Dec. 8, 2009

  • Vaccines are not 100%. It is possible for her to have whooping cough.
    Try joining the group Educate Before you Vaccinate. There are many woman in there who are very well informed about the many different aspects of vaccines (and they are not all "anti-vaccine" it's a mixed crowd).

    Answer by outstandingLove at 2:29 PM on Dec. 8, 2009

  • as far as testing her, i think it's safe to say that you should wait a few days. Just make sure she is still breathing.

    Answer by outstandingLove at 2:30 PM on Dec. 8, 2009

  • If she was sick she should not have been given a flu shot until she was over the illness.... Talk about immune system overload...

    She may have whooping cough. Tell your doc your concern and if you're dismissed take her to another doctor. Run a humidifier.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:31 PM on Dec. 8, 2009

  • The pertussis vaccine is only about 70% effective. So, yes, completely possible.

    Answer by LeanneC at 2:31 PM on Dec. 8, 2009

  • It is completely possible, nothing including vaccines is 100% and apparently your child has had an exposure to whooping cough recently. However, it would be completely idiotic for a physician to vaccinate in any way, shape, or form if they felt that your child was I dunno. I don't think testing could hurt, but I would personally hold on for a few more days. Could just be some sort of cold. Can't say enough good things about the use of vaporizers and steam.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:37 PM on Dec. 8, 2009

  • yep, it can and has happened, just because your child has had the vaccine for something doenst mean they cant and wont come down with that same thing...vaccines are not full proof.
    Thats why its always good to just take care of yourself in general, naturally boost your immune system instead of relying on the vaccines to save you.

    Answer by jlizgar at 2:42 PM on Dec. 8, 2009

  • It's a disease on the rise actually. My friend taught Head Start and had a bunch of kids, all vaxed, got it last winter. The treatment is good and though she will feel crappy for a while, she will not be damaged.

    Answer by ecodani at 2:46 PM on Dec. 8, 2009

  • My sister and I both had whooping cough as babies and we were both vaccinated. Being vaccinated for a disease is not the same thing as being immune to a disease. Vaccines don't always work.

    Answer by PhilsBabyMama at 2:50 PM on Dec. 8, 2009

  • Of course. No vaccine is 100% effective. Most are 60-80% effective.

    Answer by rkoloms at 3:42 PM on Dec. 8, 2009