Pediatric Guidelines: Respiratory Infections - Pertussis

Condition Major Pathogens First Choice Therapy Alternative Therapy Comments
Pertussis Bordetella pertussis

Age < 6 months:

Azithromycin 10mg/kg/dose PO/IV daily x 5 days


Provided regimens can also be used for post-exposure prophylaxis

Click here for CDC guidelines on post-exposure prophylaxis

Age >= 6 months:

Azithromycin 10mg/kg/dose PO on day 1 (max 500mg/dose), then 5mg/kg/dose PO daily on days 2-5 (max 250mg/dose)

Reference: Tiwari, T, et al. Recommended antimicrobial agents for the treatment and postexposure prophylaxis of pertussis: 2005 Centers for Disease Control GuidelinesMorbid Mortal Wkly Rep 2005;55:1-16.

These are guidelines only and not intended to replace clinical judgment. Modification of therapy may be indicated based on patient comorbidities, previous antibiotic therapy or infection history. Doses provided are usual doses but may require modification based on patient age or comorbid conditions. Refer to Pediatric Antimicrobial Dosing Guideline for further guidance on dosing in children, and Neonatal Dosing Guideline for infants < 1 month of age. Consult a pediatric pharmacist for individualized renal or hepatic dose adjustment. For additional guidance, please contact Pediatric Infectious Diseases (ID) or the Pediatric Antimicrobial Stewardship Program (ASP).