Pennsylvania high school student diagnosed with whooping cough

Brian Zimmerman - Print  | 

A student at Canon-McMillan High School in Canonsburg, Pa., was diagnosed with pertussis, commonly referred to as whooping cough, according to a report from the Observer-Reporter.

School district officials notified school parents of the isolated infection Thursday. The state health department is reportedly handling the case, according to the report.

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Pertussis causes uncontrollable, violent coughing, which can persist for weeks or months. The bacteria are transmitted from person-to-person physical contact, sneezing or coughing. Infants, young children and the elderly are at the highest risk for complications.

Despite high immunization rates, pertussis outbreaks can still occur due to waning immunity in vaccinated individuals.

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