Pertussis Across the Globe: Recent Epidemiologic Trends From 2000 to 2013

Tina Tan, Tine Dalby, Kevin Forsyth, Scott A. Halperin, Ulrich Heininger, Daniela Hozbor, Stanley Plotkin, Rolando Ulloa-Gutierrez, Carl Heinz Wirsing Von König

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    167 Citations (Scopus)


    Pertussis has reemerged as a problem across the world. To better understand the nature of the resurgence, we reviewed recent epidemiologic data and we report disease trends from across the world. Published epidemiologic data from January 2000 to July 2013 were obtained via PubMed searches and open-access websites. Data on vaccine coverage and reported pertussis cases from 2000 through 2012 from the 6 World Health Organization regions were also reviewed. Findings are confounded not only by the lack of systematic and comparable observations in many areas of the world but also by the cyclic nature of pertussis with peaks occurring every 3-5 years. It appears that pertussis incidence has increased in school-age children in North America and western Europe, where acellular pertussis vaccines are used, but an increase has also occurred in some countries that use whole-cell vaccines. Worldwide, pertussis remains a serious health concern, especially for infants, who bear the greatest disease burden. Factors that may contribute to the resurgence include lack of booster immunizations, low vaccine coverage, improved diagnostic methods, and genetic changes in the organism. To better understand the epidemiology of pertussis and optimize disease control, it is important to improve surveillance worldwide, irrespective of pertussis vaccine types and schedules used in each country.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)e222-e232
    Number of pages11
    JournalPediatric Infectious Disease Journal
    Issue number9
    Publication statusPublished - 26 Sep 2015


    • acellular vaccines
    • epidemiology
    • pertussis
    • whole-cell vaccine


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