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Expert Rev Vaccines. 2008 Jul;7(5):621-34. doi: 10.1586/14760584.7.5.621.

Tetanus-diphtheria-acellular pertussis vaccination of adults in the USA.

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Division of Infectious Diseases, Children's Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School, 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Pertussis is an important cause of morbidity and mortality, and its incidence has been increasing in adolescents and adults over the past two decades. Waning immunity in adolescents and adults may be partially responsible. Adults can suffer significant illness from pertussis and its complications, such as pneumonia, rib fractures and syncope. Moreover, adults serve as a source of disease for infants, who are more vulnerable to severe complications and even death. The economic burden of pertussis is substantial, in terms of both medical and nonmedical costs. Fortunately, the burden of pertussis disease can now be safely and effectively reduced by vaccinating adults with tetanus-diphtheria-acellular pertussis (Tdap) vaccine. Further research is needed to elucidate the role of vaccination in pregnant women and those over 65 years of age, and also to determine whether further booster doses of Tdap are needed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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