What are the CNS complications of pertussis (whooping cough)?

Updated: May 02, 2019
  • Author: Joseph J Bocka, MD; Chief Editor: Russell W Steele, MD  more...
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Answer

Central nervous system (CNS) complications, such as seizures (1-2% of infants) and encephalopathy, are less common and are thought to result from severe, paroxysm-induced cerebral hypoxia and apnea; metabolic disturbances such as hypoglycemia; and small intracranial hemorrhages. Failure to thrive is another possible complication of pertussis.


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