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Whooping cough has been around since the 15th Century, with the first epidemic having occurred in the Paris in the 1500s. It is a complex illness, which is often taken lightly, especially in its earliest stage. A child often comes down with what is thought to be a cold. He/she has a runny nose, red eyes, etc., and lots of times is left without medical attention. This allows whooping cough/pertussis to reach its most critical stage when there is a buildup of mucus in the throat and he/she is beset by paroxysms of coughing that can last for many weeks. The disease has an especially long convalescent stage before the coughing finally subsides. Unfortunately many small children contract the disease, and the cases prior to two years of age are the most often fatal. I have researched my e-book using a variety of resources including medical texts and journals, but also newspapers and ancestral records. The news articles are especially important in chronicling the development of the whooping cough vaccine, which became available in the 1930s.

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