American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A highly contagious disease of the respiratory system, usually affecting children, that is caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis and is characterized in its advanced stage by spasms of coughing interspersed with deep, noisy inspirations. Also called pertussis.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. An acute contagious disease of childhood, from which, however, adults are not always exempt, characterized by recurrent attacks of a peculiar spasmodic cough. This consists in a series of short expirations, followed (after a seeming effort) by a long strident inspiration, the whoop, and often accompanied by vomiting; pertussis. Also spelled
- n. pathology A contagious disease of the respiratory system that usually affects children; caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis. In the advanced stage it is characterised by spasms of coughing followed by a whooping sound during the intake of breath.
GNU Webster's 1913
- (Med.) a violent, convulsive cough, returning at longer or shorter intervals, and consisting of several expirations, followed by a sonorous inspiration, or whoop; chin cough; hooping cough.
- n. a disease of the respiratory mucous membrane
- whoop (sound) + -ing + cough; from the characteristic sounding cough that is a major symptom (Wiktionary)
“In 1939, when I arrived in that hospital with double pneumonia and whooping cough, fully half of all deaths of kids up to age ten were from pneumonia, influenza, and diarrhea/enteritis, while TB, diphtheria, dysentery, and whooping cough contributed an additional 13 percent of deaths to children under ten.”
“In 2009, there were more than 13,000 cases of pertussis more commonly known as whooping cough in Australia, which is the highest number ever recorded.”
“She also neglected to report that Stewart’s anti-vaccine manifesto had contributed to the explosion of whooping cough hospitalizations in Great Britain in the late 1970s.”
“Today, the AAP, the CDC, and many state health departments have audio recordings of whooping cough attacks on their Web sites, and it’s unlikely there’s a pediatrician in the country who isn’t aware of the disease’s warning signs.”
“In October, the California Department of Public Health announced that a statewide whooping cough epidemic had already caused more than 5,500 infections, which put the state on pace to record the highest number of cases since 1950, when the pertussis vaccine was just entering widespread use.”
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