Key Facts 

  • Pertussis, or whooping cough, is often thought of as a childhood disease, however it also impacts adults.
  • Vaccination for pertussis is recommended for persons of all ages in the United States and is well below target for adults.
  • It is especially important for high-risk adults to be vaccinated against pertussis, with recent data showing that adults with asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) may be at increased risk.
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Understand Your Risk

Answer these three questions to learn more about your risk.

Pertussis, or whooping cough, is a serious respiratory illness that can easily spread from person to person.

Vaccination is the best way to help protect against pertussis. Even if you have been previously vaccinated for pertussis, the CDC may recommend additional vaccination.

What is your age?

Please Select an Age Range

Vaccination for pertussis is recommended for all ages in the United States.

Have you been diagnosed with asthma or COPD?

Please Indicate Asthma Diagnosis.

While anyone can get pertussis, adults living with asthma or COPD are at increased risk of infection and complications.

When did you last receive the Tdap vaccine?

Please indicate vaccination status.

The Tdap vaccine protects against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis.

Results

  • Vaccination for pertussis is recommended for adults of all ages in the United States.
  • Asthma or COPD puts you at greater risk for infection and complications from pertussis.
  • Anyone can get pertussis, which is a preventable infectious respiratory disease.

Keep up the good work! Staying up to date with vaccination recommendations is a great way to protect against infectious respiratory diseases. 

Speak with your healthcare provider to ensure your vaccinations are up to date. 

Get the latest news and information on Pertussis and lung health.

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Whooping Cough in Adults

Pertussis is highly contagious. It is spread from person to person through close contact with someone who is infected via secretions from coughing and sneezing.  

Only 30% (less than a third) of adults in America report receiving a pertussis vaccine in the past 10 years leaving too many people vulnerable. Vaccination is the best way to help protect yourself against pertussis. Preventing pertussis also means reducing your risk of hospitalization, severe outcomes and death for high-risk individuals.  

Whooping cough can also infect adults. Learn more about vaccine options that can help protect you from this serious respiratory disease. This video is sponsored in collaboration with Sanofi.

Adults with Asthma and COPD are at Higher Risk for Complications

While anyone can get pertussis, adults living with asthma and COPD are at increased risk of infection and complications. Making sure your vaccinations are up to date is an important part of managing your chronic lung disease. 

  • Understanding Pertussis (Whooping Cough) in Adults

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Page last updated: August 10, 2022

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