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Whooping Cough Reboot: The 100-Day Cough (aka Pertussis)

An outbreak of whooping cough in Central Alberta has been officially declared. In May 2013 I wrote about a diagnosed case from my practice (the whole family did well and yes…the child who had whooping cough had been diagnosed by the doctor). The child recovered nicely and the rest of the family was spared…the best outcome wished for by everyone.

The information remains the same whether the outbreak was in May 2013 or today or some time in the future, so we are simply offering a ‘reboot’ today.

Screenshot 2014-12-09 11.43.44

Reboot (with a couple of changes)

A one-time case in my private homeopathic practice this week is hardly call for a whooping cough epidemic in Calgary but a quick search on the internet revealed that there have been several outbreaks happening in Canada and the USA these past two years. Whooping cough or Pertussis happens, even in the vaccinated population.

This article was updated in March 2012:

“Despite widespread childhood vaccination against Bordatella pertussis, disease remains prevalent. It has been suggested that acellular vaccine may be less effective than previously believed. During a large outbreak, we examined the incidence of pertussis and effectiveness of vaccination in a well-vaccinated, well-defined community.

Conclusions. Our data suggests that the current schedule of acellular pertussis vaccine doses is insufficient to prevent outbreaks of pertussis. We noted a markedly increased rate of disease from ages 8–12 years, proportionate to the interval since the last scheduled vaccine.”

The recommendation is to re-vaccinate…but there is no guarantee that this will confer immunity, certainly it is not known how long any vaccine will ‘last’. And…how do you determine who needs a repeat vaccine and who does not?

For a discussion of what herd immunity is, check out another newsletter on whooping cough where the work of Dr. Suzanne Humphries and Roman Bystrianyk is quoted. The quotes are from their book Dissolving Illusions: Disease, Vaccines, and the Forgotten History.

So whether you are a vaccinated-for-whooping-cough family (DTaP vaccine) or a vaccine-free family, you will want to know what you can do for your child (or adults in the household) diagnosed with whooping cough. Outbreaks will continue to happen.

“If Bordatella parapertussis (vaccine resistant strain of whooping cough) has become the predominant whooping cough strain in the US in the last decade, then we might be turning the mild B. parapertussis whooping cough into a severe disease by means of the aP (acellular pertussis which replaced whole cell pertussis which had a poor safety record) vaccine. Incidentally, the emergency response of public health officials to the growing epidemic of whooping cough in California in 2011 was to introduce and additional booster for children above 12 years old and adults to ‘protect’ the young. Let’s just do more of what does not work and hope it will start working.
Vaccine Illusion: How Vaccination Compromises Our Natural Immunity and What We Can Do to Regain Our Health by Dr. Tetyana Obukhanych, PhD in Immunology

Just a Cold and Cough

Likely, your child will only seem mildly sick at first with a ‘cold’ and symptoms like a runny nose, sneezing, mild cough, and a low grade fever. Within a couple of weeks, the cough turns into spells of coughing coughing coughing that can end in vomiting, gagging, or in the characteristic ‘whoop’ of whooping cough when your child breathes in at the end of a spell. What is also characteristic is that there can be a long time in between spells of coughing. Of most concern is for infants under 6 months and babies under a year. They may not have the whoop (not all children, teens or adults will get this characteristic whoop either) but for infants and babies, there be times when they actually stop breathing (called apnea) simply because they cannot catch their breath during a coughing spell.

When is a Cough a Whooping Cough?

If the coughing spells have gone on for a month, you’ll likely want to take your child to the doctor where they can test for pertussis bacteria. This is the bacterium responsible for whooping cough. Most parents I know these days, however, will have done their research on the Internet and will likely have a pretty good idea of what is going on with this kind of persistent cough. One of the very best websites I have found is from Dr. Doug Jenkinson, who has put together some great information along with audio clips and video of children and adults with whooping cough, some with the whoop and some without. His advice is to be sure to video your child or adult in the throes of a coughing spell because it is possible that you go to the doctor or to emergency and your child does not cough…at all. If you have a video, it’s likely that they will then believe you and test for whooping cough.

Conventional Treatment

“For the average case of whooping cough there is no treatment likely to make a difference to the course of the illness or materially reduce the symptoms. It will generally take its course no matter what. Attempts to get benefit from bronchodilators, cough suppressants or antibiotics are generally futile.” — Dr. Doug Jenkinson

So what is a parent to do? The SINGLE best article you will ever read on the treatment of whooping cough is written by Dr. Suzanne Humphries. Dr. Humphries outlines the kind and amounts of Vitamin C that are essential to your child’s recovery.

Homeopathic Help

In addition, homeopathic remedies will be able to help support your child’s healing. Check out the Resources at the bottom of the page for a whooping cough remedy handout.

This is one of the illnesses where as a parent, you want to do everything you can to help you child heal and to make sure that everyone gets much needed sleep. Homeopathy can support healing in this kind of infectious illness. And homeopathy can also be used to prevent the illness. Talk to your homeopath about the use of homeopathic Pertussin as prevention. (You will find there is controversy with this topic. There are some studies. Please refer to this website page and search the references for Whooping Cough. Thanks to Fran Sheffield for her research. Please read, be informed and discuss your options – if vaccines, read the product monograph for potential adverse events and if homeopathy – discuss with your homeopath. Always discuss with your medical doctor either/or/both options.)

Please remember, if your child is having difficulty breathing, you must head to the hospital right away. Please keep that in mind when you have a sick child. Western medicine excels at emergency medicine and if you are dealing with broken bones, brain inflammation/injury, bleeding and breathing problems, you must get medical help.


Handout: Homeopathic Remedies for Pertussis

Here’s a balanced, thoughtful point of view in a blog written by an adult who had whooping cough as an adult. There are many things to consider before getting a vaccine or using Homeoprophylaxis or having the disease. The fifth Vaccine Free: Now What? course will take place this spring. Do consider signing up and learning the information BEFORE the next infectious illness outbreak. Be prepared before making a decision rather than making a last minute decision under pressure and panic. Email us at info{at}powersofhomeopathy{dot}com to get on the early registration list.

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