Parents concerned after 3rd case of whooping cough reported at Apex High School

APEX, N.C. (WNCN) — Doctors are urging parents to be on the lookout for whooping cough in their kids.

“We have five children at home, so for us it’s a big concern,” parent Richard Labrosse said.

Pertussis, or whooping cough, is being heard in Wake County.

Laura Juknaite-Grari, a parent of two, said, “Of course, it makes me concerned.”

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Since last month, three cases have been reported at Apex High School. Doctors say whooping cough lasts several weeks and may not be recognized until the second stage.

“We culture you for it, and we treat you for it. But you’ve probably already spread the infection before that stage,” said Dr. Andrea Newman, a pediatrician at Wake County Human Services.

Officials said vaccinations are key.

“There are definitely benefits,” Newman told CBS North Carolina. “It’s really the only way to protect you and the people around you.”

The first vaccination is for infants, just a couple of months old. Doctors are now recommending sixth graders also get one, and continue to receive one every 10 years.

CBS North Carolina’s Lauren Haviland spoke with parents that have mixed emotions about the preventative measure.

“I would let their body fight and see…hopefully it’s nothing too serious,” Juknaite-Grari said.

“It makes me angry. I am powerless to do anything about it, because we’ve decided to protect our children because of our doctor’s legitimate advice,” Labrosse said.

Besides a vaccination, doctors recommend covering your mouth when you cough and washing your hands regularly.

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