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Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child is unwell. If you have any serious medical concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP.

Intermittent whooping whilst coughing?

(9 Posts)
ShiftyFades Wed 23-Jan-13 20:58:16

DS (4) has been off colour since last week. He had a high temp on Saturday evening (39.6) which lasted until today.
On Monday his eyes started weeping so took him to GP. She's given him eye drops and ABs as both ears are severely infected.
He started coughing on Monday and on Monday night he coughed so much he was sick ( just milk though).
Yesterday he was coughing a bit more and last night coughed enough to sound like he was choking.

Today he's been a bit brighter and ate for the first time since Saturday (half a small sandwich).

But he's whooped a few times whilst coughing. I rang GP who wants to see him tomorrow.

I searched YouTube and his cough / whoop sounded the same as the first one I came across under whooping cough. But I guess, equally, it might not be.

He's coughing away in bed atm but not whooping now. I read that some people don't whoop at all.

But can you whoop intermittently? Or are you either a whooper or not?

Mynewmoniker Wed 23-Jan-13 21:02:41

No idea but I'm glad you've got a GP appointment. My nephew was seriously ill in hospital with whooping cough as a 6month old. It was worrying.

I hadn't heard of it for a couple of years until, funnily enough, a neighbour mentioned an older friend had just been diagnosed with it today.

Best to be safe than sorry.

Let us know how you get on.

ShiftyFades Wed 23-Jan-13 21:06:54

The doctor did hear him whoop over the phone (perfect timing by DS). I found a whooping cough website (set up by a retired GP) and his symptoms (except the ear infections) seem to tie in.
GP said he'd be bloody unlucky to get it on top of the ears but also that the vaccine is only 95% effective.

When I heard it my jaw dropped as I've never heard a sound like it. But because its not with every cough I'm starting to doubt my gut reaction.

I'm feeling pants too now with a sore throat and developing cough sad

The receptionist said she's just come back to work having contracted it blush

SarahZ Wed 23-Jan-13 21:11:23

DS had whooping cough at 18months, can't remember if whoop was intermittent or not but he coughed, coughed again and coughed again, all without drawing breath.

I didn't recognise it as not v common now and he was vaccinated. HV heard cough, got immediate appointment with GP, who heard whoop and prescribed ABs that cleared it up instantly. Brilliant stuff.

dikkertjedap Wed 23-Jan-13 21:12:07

Maybe this website helps to answer your questions

Whooping cough is a notifiable disease. That means that your GP should ideally take a swab to positively confirm it and notify the Health Protection Agency. It also means that your son will be prescribed a course of antibiotics to reduce his infectiousness to his environment, he will need to stay home until he has completed the course. These antibiotics won't help your son at all (only help if given in the first stage, eg before the classic symptoms develop, he will now be in stage 2). If he has any siblings then you could ask for antibiotics for them prophylactically so they have a smaller chance of catching it, same applies to you and your DH.

Whooping cough is also known as the 100 day cough, so it can go on for a while, but after the first few weeks it will get easier.

Your GP may prescribe erythromycin which needs to be take four times a day and tends to cause tummy upsets/vomiting. Given that this antibiotic will be given to protect the wider community and not benefit your son, I would insist on clarithromycin, which is at least as effective, if not more so, only needs to be taken twice a day and is generally much better tolerated.

Unfortunately there are still lots of whooping cough outbreaks. Vaccination only provides 9 in 10 with protection, so 1 in 10 may get it. Also it is now thought that the effectiveness of the vaccine starts wearing off after a five year period, therefore adults are also at increased risk.

ShiftyFades Wed 23-Jan-13 21:14:35

I understand you need to get ABs early to stop the contagious bit.

He's not coughing too long (yet) but its early days. But the whoops were in the middle of coughing spurts and at the end.

He's fine in between coughing fits. No aches, no pains.

I don't know, I just don't know. I'm not sure the GP will know either wink

SarahZ Wed 23-Jan-13 21:14:49

It was that erythromycin he had

ShiftyFades Wed 23-Jan-13 21:21:34

He's not producing thick phlegm yet and it's hard to tell the saliva from the snot (poor little lamb).

Talking myself out of it now as I'm so sleep deprived already grin

ShiftyFades Wed 23-Jan-13 21:22:44

Meant to say thank you for the link, that's the website I found earlier, very informative.

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