Table 1

Clinical details of five infants presenting with pertussis

CaseAge (weeks)PresentationRelevant historyAntibiotic prophylaxis to close contactsBlood leucocytes (lymphocytes) × 109/lDuration of endotracheal intubation, mode of respiratory support & outcomeB pertussis cultured from
13Fever, cough, poor feeding, cyanosisIn household contact with cousin with a culture positive pertussis infectionNot given70.7 (27.3)18 hours
Mechanical ventilation,
HFOV & NO
Died
Nasal swab in cousin
25Apnoeas
No cough/whoop
Born prematurely at 34 weeks’ gestation Not given26 (18.72)2 days
Mechanical ventilation, nasal CPAP (3 weeks)
Survived
Nasal swab
32Cough, apnoea, vomiting, hypoxia, bradycardiaConcurrent, paroxysmal cough in parentsNot given18.1 (11.8)9 days
Mechanical ventilation
Survived
Nasal swab
44Cough, poor feeding2 patients on ward with culture positive pertussisNot given81.0 (36.5)36 days
Mechanical ventilation
HFOV, ECMO
Died
Tracheal secretions
54Cough, hypoxiaConcurrent, paroxysmal cough in 2 older sibsNot given63.0 (23.0)33 days
Mechanical ventilation, ECMO
Died
Nasal swab
  • HFOV, High frequency oscillatory ventilation; NO, nitric oxide; ECMO, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation.