Pertussis Vaccination in Pregnancy

by Nathan Fujita

Cases of whooping cough have been on the rise in recent years, and in 2012, the number of U.S. illnesses soared to more than 48,000 — more than any other year since 1955; infants are at particular risk. The formulation for the whooping cough vaccine was changed in 1997. The new formulation causes less of a reaction, but it may also wear off sooner. To maximize protection for an infant, optimal timing for Tdap administration is between 27 and 36 weeks gestation for the pregnant mother to allow passive antibody transfer to the infant. On October 24, 2012, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices voted to recommend use of Tdap vaccine during every pregnancy.

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This information is not meant as medical advice. It is provided solely for education. Our practice would be pleased to discuss your unique circumstances and needs as they relate to these topics.