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Bordetella infection 

Bordetella infection
Chapter:
Bordetella infection
Author(s):

Cameron C. Grant

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198746690.003.0119
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date: 28 February 2021

Bordetella are small Gram-negative coccobacilli, of which Bordetella pertussis is the most important human pathogen. Bordetella pertussis is the cause of whooping cough, which remains one of the 10 leading causes of death among children less than five years old. Transmission of this highly infectious organism is primarily by aerosolized droplets. The preferred diagnostic methods are polymerase chain reaction detection from nasopharyngeal samples and serology (IgG antibodies to pertussis toxin). Macrolide antibiotics are recommended if started within four weeks of illness onset. Preventing severe disease in young children remains the primary goal, hence schedules consist of a three-dose infant series and subsequent booster doses. Acellular vaccines enable immunization schedules to include adolescents and adults. Acellular pertussis vaccine given to pregnant women reduces the risk of pertussis in young infants. Antibiotic prophylaxis is given when there is an infant at risk of exposure.

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