Pertussis

Last updated: Saturday, 07, August, 2010
Key InformationAppropriate Tests

For confirmation of acute, typical infection: nasopharyngeal swab/aspirate - Bordetella pertussis detection.

For culture nasopharyngeal swab must be plated immediately after collection; nasopharyngeal aspirate is preferred. Bordetella pertussis antibodies (IgA) - nasopharyngeal aspirate may also be performed, if available.

For PCR detection of B. pertussis, a throat swab may be acceptable, especially from an adult.  FBC, differential WCC (lymphocytosis common, but not required for diagnosis), blood film.

If cough has been present for >4 weeks: Bordetella pertussis antibodies (IgA) - serum.