Journal Article

Characteristics of Severe <i>Bordetella pertussis</i> Infection Among Infants ≤90 Days of Age Admitted to Pediatric Intensive Care Units – Southern California, September 2009–June 2011

Erin L. Murray, Delma Nieves, John S. Bradley, Jessie Gargas, Wilbert H. Mason, Deborah Lehman, Kathleen Harriman and James D. Cherry

in Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society

Published on behalf of Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society

Volume 2, issue 1, pages 1-6
Published in print March 2013 | ISSN: 2048-7193
Published online January 2013 | e-ISSN: 2048-7207 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jpids/pis105
Characteristics of Severe Bordetella pertussis Infection Among Infants ≤90 Days of Age Admitted to Pediatric Intensive Care Units – Southern California, September 2009–June 2011

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Background

Bordetella pertussis infection can cause severe illness and death among young infants.

Methods

We collected demographic and clinical information from the medical records of infants who were ≤90 days of age and hospitalized for pertussis in 5 Southern California pediatric intensive care units (PICUs) from September 1, 2009 to June 30, 2011. Infants who died or were diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension were considered to have more severe pertussis.

Results

Thirty-one infants were admitted to a participating PICU. Eight infants had more severe infections, 6 infants had pulmonary hypertension, and 4 infants died. The 8 infants with more severe infections had white blood cell counts that exceeded 30 000, heart rates that exceeded 170, and respiratory rates that exceeded 70 more rapidly after cough onset than the 23 infants with less severe illness.

Conclusions

Identifying higher-risk infants earlier might allow for more rapid implementation of interventions.

Keywords: Pertussis; Fatal Pertussis; Pertussis Death; PICU Care; Leukocytosis; Pulmonary Hypertension

Journal Article.  3312 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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