Diseases Home > Whooping Cough Statistics
An increasing number of whooping cough cases have been reported to the CDC since the 1980s. The increases are greatest among adolescents and infants younger than 5 months old. However, the number of reported cases is still more than 97 percent lower than in the pre-vaccine era. Other statistics indicate that, in 2004, approximately 60 percent of whooping cough cases occurred among people over the age of 11.
Before the availability of the pertussis vaccine, whooping cough (also known as pertussis) was a common cause of complications and deaths among children. During the 6-year period from 1940 through 1945, more than 1 million cases of whooping cough were reported, an average of 175,000 cases per year (incidence of approximately 150 cases per 100,000 population).
Following the introduction of the pertussis vaccine in the 1940s, the incidence of whooping cough gradually declined, reaching 15,000 reported cases in 1960 (approximately 8 per 100,000 population). By 1970, the annual incidence was fewer than 5,000 cases per year, and during 1980-1990, an average of 2,900 cases per year were reported (about 1 per 100,000 population).
An increasing number of cases of whooping cough have been reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) since the 1980s. The increases are greatest among adolescents (aged 10-19 years), but an increase is also seen among infants younger than 5 months old. The reported increases may reflect greater awareness of whooping cough to some degree. Even with the increase in reports among adolescents and very young infants, the number of reported cases is more than 97 percent lower than in the pre-vaccine era.
A total of 25,827 cases were reported in 2004, the largest number since 1959.