But whooping cough is far nastier than these words make it appear.
Whooping cough still kills around 300,000 infants around the world each year and is one of the leading avoidable causes of death in children. The vast majority of those deaths occur in populations with poor, or non existent vaccination programs.
I have cared for patients with whooping cough, and it's a terribly debilitating disease. One family of five suffered miserably with pertussis for SIX months! They didn't have the energy to go upstairs to their bedrooms, so neighbours had dragged the mattresses downstairs for them to lie on. They were exhausted from the intractable coughing and feeling unwell: antibiotics were of no use to them, and all they could do was wait for full recovery, which eventually happened.
Because of the unfounded scare regarding the whooping cough vaccine, many people were confused and stopped vaccinating their children: children are at far greater risk of harm being driven to the supermarket in their parents car! Having our precious children protected against these "Childhood", yet killer diseases is something we should all do. If you do have genuine concerns, then talk to an expert, and, as my Mum always told me, don't always believe everything you read in the newspaper!