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Why Whooping Cough Is Becoming Resistant To Vaccine

Dr. Mark Sawyer, a pediatrician and infections disease specialist at UC San Diego School of Medicine and Rady Children's Hospital in San Diego, talks to KPBS about a new report showing cases of whooping cough in the U.S. may be resistant to the vaccine.

We're sorry. This audio clip is no longer available. A transcript has been made available.

A report published in the New England Journal of Medicine shows cases of whooping cough in the U.S. may be resistant to the vaccine. However, the Centers for Disease Control are reluctant to draw conclusions from the study.

Vaccine resistance could be one reason why cases of whooping cough have been increasing. Last year 18 Americans died from the disease.

San Diego County went through its worst whopping cough epidemic in 2010. KPBS was the first to report most of the people who got sick were already immunized. Scientists don't believe the new strain is more deadly. But they suspect the vaccine may not work as well against it. The new bug has already been identified in Japan, Finland, and France.


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