What is pertussis?
Pertussis, or whooping cough, is a persistent cough illness. Anyone of any age can get pertussis.
What are the symptoms of pertussis?
The first symptoms of pertussis are similar to a cold. After a week or two, the cough worsens and begins to occur in sudden, uncontrollable bursts. Persons with pertussis may seem well between coughing spells. The coughing spells become less frequent over time, but may continue for several weeks or months until the lungs heal.
Vomiting can occur following coughing. Children, in particular, may make high-pitched whooping sounds when gasping for breath after coughing.
Is there a lab test for pertussis?
To test for pertussis, the nasal passage is swabbed. The material on the swab is then examined in the lab for the presence of pertussis bacteria. Only persons with symptoms of pertussis should be tested.
How is pertussis spread?
Pertussis bacteria are spread through droplets produced during coughing or sneezing. These droplets don’t travel very far through the air and usually only infect persons nearby.
When and for how long can a person spread pertussis?
Persons with pertussis can spread it to others in the first 3 weeks of coughing if not treated with antibiotics. After a person with pertussis has taken antibiotics for 5 days, he or she can no longer spread the disease.
Although the cough can last longer than 3 weeks, a person is no longer contagious after the third week.
How long should someone with pertussis stay home from child care, school, or work?
Persons with pertussis should stay home from child care, school, work, and other activities until they have finished 5 days of antibiotics, unless they have already been coughing for 3 or more weeks.
How can pertussis be prevented?
The best way to prevent pertussis is to be vaccinated. In addition to routine childhood immunizations, a pertussis vaccine booster shot is now recommended for adolescents and adults. Come to UHS to get this booster shot.
Persons who have completed some or all of the recommended vaccinations for pertussis may still get pertussis disease, but will generally have a milder illness.
Wash your hands often
Stay at home if you are ill
When coughing, cover your mouth with a tissue or cough into your sleeve
Contact UHS if you develop pertussis-like symptoms or have been exposed to someone with pertussis.
University Health Services, Main Campus Location 513-556-2564
Pertussis Questions and Answers (PDF)
The Florida Department of Health has identified an area with local mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission (active Zika virus transmission) in Miami (http://www.cdc.gov/zika/intheus/florida-update.html
). This alert applies to women of reproductive age and their partners who live in or traveled to this area after June 15, 2016. This is an ongoing investigation, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is rapidly learning more about the extent of active Zika virus transmission in Florida. With the recommendations that follow, CDC is applying existing guidance to the occurrence of Zika virus transmission in this area of Florida. As more information becomes available, we will update these recommendations.
The virus is transmitted primarily through the bite of an infected mosquito, but can also be transmitted by a man to a woman through sexual transmission. The CDC recommends that pregnant women consider postponing travel to Zika-affected areas because of an association between Zika virus infections and certain birth defects.”
Spring 2016 Mumps outbreaks
As of March 2016, there are three reported mumps outbreaks on university campuses, including two nearby in Indiana. All University of Cincinnati students are encouraged to check their vaccination status. If they have not been fully vaccinated for mumps (two doses of the MMR vaccine), they should come to the University Health Services to be fully vaccinated.
Mumps virus is the causative agent of mumps, a disease characterized by swelling of the parotid glands, salivary glands, and other epithelial tissues. Infection is accompanied by high morbidity (you feel real sick!). The symptoms of mumps are fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, loss of appetite, and swollen glands. Most people recover fully, but there is a rare chance of serious complications, such as deafness. The disease is still present even with availability of an effective vaccine.
Before the U.S. began vaccinating against mumps in 1967 [MMR - measles-mumps-rubella vaccine], there were about 186,000 cases reported each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Now, the number of cases ranges from a couple hundred to a couple thousand yearly. It is not uncommon for cases to spread in outbreaks on campuses, due to the close living quarters of students. In addition, recent misunderstandings about immunizations have increased the number of students who may not be protected. Please contact the University Health Services if you have any questions about the MMR vaccine or any concerns about symptoms consistent with mumps.
Mumps Questions and Answers (PDF)