The Arkansas Department of Health is investigating several cases of pertussis, also commonly known as whooping cough, at a Clinton school.
A news release states that the department has confirmed cases at Clinton Intermediate School, and more individuals are showing early symptoms.
Pertussis is a highly contagious, airborne respiratory infection that typically spreads when infected persons cough or sneeze while in close contact with others, the release states. According to the Center for Disease Control's website, one person with pertussis can spread the illness to up to 15 people.
The symptoms, which typically develop within a week to 10 days of contact, include:
• persistent, rapid coughing fits
• a “whooping” sound, caused by rapid intake of air following a coughing fit
• vomiting caused by extreme coughing
• exhaustion after coughing fits
The health department is providing booster vaccines to all Clinton Intermediate School students and antibiotics to those exhibiting symptoms, according to the release.
Individuals who believe they have been exposed to or have symptoms of pertussis should contact their doctor for an evaluation.