Medical Q&As

Whooping cough

I am in my thirties and have been struggling to get rid of whooping cough over the last five weeks. Cough medicines and antibiotics have helped somewhat. I am a non-smoker and have never had chest trouble before. How much longer can I expect to be coughing before it clears up?

You have my sympathy because the cough associated with Whooping cough can be very persistent and quite exhausting. It is good that you are a non-smoker because a smoker would suffer even more severely. Irrespective of what treatment is given the cough can persist for many weeks. You are probably over the worst of the illness at this stage but you can probably expect to continue coughing for another few weeks. It would not be unusual for the cough to last for up to two months. Your question emphasises that Whooping cough is not a trivial illness and should encourage parents to make sure to have their children vaccinated against the infection.