Fri July 20, 2012
Increase in Whooping Cough Cases has Health Officials Concerned
State and local health officials are investigating a spike in the number of reported cases of whooping cough.
The New York State Health Department says more cases have been reported already in 2012 than all of 2011. In the first half of this year, 970 cases were reported. Last year a total of 931 cases were reported.
Monroe County is also seeing an increase of recent years.
Dr. Geoffrey Weinberg, Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Rochester Medical Center, says young children and infants are most at risk for severe cases, "It inflames the airways of the throat as well as it can cause pneumonia. And there are two things that probably operate to make children more at risk. One is their relative lack of immunity - since they're younger they haven't been exposed to germs as much as people who have survived into adulthood."
Weinberg says it is important for all people to get immunized to reduce the threat to more vulnerable members of the community.
Weinberg spoke on WXXI-TV’s Need to Know Rochester on Friday, July 20. See the full interview in the video box below.