Skip to content →


Common-sense reminder regarding pertussis

The State of Washington has declared an epidemic of pertussis, or whooping cough. This news is of particular importance to families with infants, who are among the most vulnerable to the illness. La Leche League of Washington wants to help keep your babies healthy and safe.

If you think you or a family member is sick, do not attend your LLL meeting until the illness has been treated and there are no symptoms.

Pertussis is a highly contagious bacterial infection that causes a long-lasting and often severe cough. The illness usually starts with mild cold symptoms or cough, which can turn into severe coughing spells followed by gagging, or vomiting and sometimes a “whoop” sound when trying to catch the breath. Young infants, adolescents and adults with whooping cough are less likely to make the “whoop” sound.

Infants with pertussis may eat poorly, turn blue, or stop breathing.

La Leche League of Washington appreciates your attention and consideration for your fellow LLL families in this important matter.

For pressing breastfeeding concerns, please call your local Leader. To find local help, see our groups page. Mothers may also post questions or comments to the LLL of Washington Facebook wall, which is monitored by an accredited Leader.

For more information about the pertussis epidemic, go to

Media inquiries

For information please contact