Tippecanoe School Corporation

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Pertussis (Whooping Cough) information
Pertussis (Whooping Cough) information

The Tippecanoe County Health Department has informed the TSC that we have six students who have confirmed cases of pertussis (whooping cough) — five students from Harrison High School and one from Battle Ground Middle School. Pertussis is a contagious respiratory illness that can spread person-to-person by coughing and sneezing.

We want to provide our school community with the information in case your student exhibits symptoms that may indicate pertussis.

Symptoms usually begin 7-10 days following exposure (range 4-21 days). The first symptoms of pertussis are those of the common cold with a mild cough. After a week or two, the cough becomes more severe and may occur more frequently during sleep. As the cough gets worse, it usually includes a series of coughs (coughing fits or spasms). People with pertussis may have vomiting following the coughing spell and have difficulty catching their breath, which may cause a whooping sound. However, not everyone develops a whoop; it is not as common in older children and adults as it is in younger children. Generally, there is no fever or only a low grade fever with pertussis.

It is important that you not send your child to school if he or she has any of the signs and symptoms of pertussis mentioned above. If you suspect your child may have pertussis, you should contact your doctor. If children with these symptoms are present in our school, their parents may be called to take them home and have them evaluated by a physician.

If you have any questions, please contact your school nurse or TSC Nursing Supervisor Krystal Zahn at 765-772-1742 or kzahn@tscschools.com.