MECKLENBURG COUNTY, N.C. — The Mecklenburg County Health Department is alerting staff and parents of children who attend Elizabeth Lane Elementary School of a case of Pertussis, better known as Whooping Cough.

The letter was sent Tuesday, February 25. It says a person in the school has been diagnosed with the contagious bacterial infection. It also says if you’re receiving the letter, “your child was identified as sharing a classroom and/or bus with the ill person.”

The health department says symptoms are similar to the cold for the first week or two, including runny nose, low-grade fever, and a mild cough which worsens gradually. Within 1-2 weeks, the coughing episodes may transition to sudden fits, and a whoop may be heard.

After exposure, symptoms may begin in 6-20 days, and the cough can last for months. Infected people are contagious for about three weeks after the onset of the cough, if not on the appropriate antibiotic.

Experts say antibiotics should be considered for high-risk individuals, especially pregnant women or people who have close contact with infants.

The health department encourages anyone who develops symptoms to contact a doctor immediately and tell them that you or your child have been exposed to Pertussis.

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