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Do over-the-counter cough medicines work to treat whooping cough?

ANSWER

Don't use over-the-counter cough medicines, cough suppressants, or expectorants (medicines that make you cough up mucus) to treat whooping cough. They don't work.

SOURCES:

CDC: “Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Diagnosis and Treatment;” “Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Vaccination;” and “Protect Babies from Whooping Cough (Pertussis).”

HealthyChildren.org: “Whooping Cough.”

Nemours Foundation: “Infections: Whooping Cough (Pertussis).”

Reviewed by Dan Brennan on March 11, 2018

SOURCES:

CDC: “Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Diagnosis and Treatment;” “Pertussis (Whooping Cough) Vaccination;” and “Protect Babies from Whooping Cough (Pertussis).”

HealthyChildren.org: “Whooping Cough.”

Nemours Foundation: “Infections: Whooping Cough (Pertussis).”

Reviewed by Dan Brennan on March 11, 2018

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What are the risks of dehydrations from whooping cough?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.