How is pertussis diagnosed?

The doctor will perform a physical examination and ask questions about you or your child’s symptoms. A sample of nasal secretions may be taken by using a cotton swab to collect fluid from inside the nose. A sample can also be collected by filling a syringe with saline fluid and flushing the fluid through the nose and back of the throat. The samples will be analyzed for the presence of Bordetella bacteria. Blood tests may also be performed.

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy