LOOK FOR SYMPTOMS: A case of whooping cough has been confirmed in Murgon.
LOOK FOR SYMPTOMS: A case of whooping cough has been confirmed in Murgon. Peter Gardiner

Contagious infection identified at South Burnett school

PARENTS of students at Murgon State High School have been advised to watch their child for symptoms after a case of whooping cough was identified at the school.

In a letter addressed to parents and staff of the school, public health physician Penny Hutchinson said Darling Downs Public Health has been notified of a case of whooping cough and advised guardians to look for symptoms, especially over the next three weeks.

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Whooping cough, also referred to as pertussis, is a highly contagious respiratory infection that can affect people of any age.

It often starts like a cold with a runny nose, sneezing and tiredness over several days before the characteristic coughing bouts develop.

Coughing fits are frequently followed by gagging or vomiting.

During coughing attacks, a child's breathing can be obstructed and they may become blue or stop breathing.

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Whooping cough can be life threatening in babies and in adults it can cause significant problems with the cough persisting for up to three months.

To prevent the infection, people who have been diagnosed should not attend school until they have completed the first five days of a course of the recommended antibiotics.

For more information read the pertussis fact sheet on the Queensland Health website or call the Darling Downs Health Unit on 4699 8240.

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