Just had my appointment and got a vaccine for HEP A and typhoid.
My real worry is Japanese Encephalitis. My travel doctor told me not to worry but I cannot stop thinking about the "what-ifs"
Would it be worth to get for my 46 day trip? Will be traveling from May 1-June 17
I will only be passing through rural areas at night in a first class air conditioned train.
My itinerary is as follows
Hoi An-4 days
Hue- 4 days
Hanoi and Halong Bay- 4 days
Malacca- 1 day
Kuala Lumpur- 3 days
Penang- 3 days
Phuket- 5 days
Bangkok- 5 days
Siem Reap- 5 days
I will be taking day trips to more rural places during the day only.
Based on this itinerary. Would it be wise to drop the $500 on the JE vaccine?
Any feedback would be great. I feel that I should just put my mind at ease and that realistically, nothing will probably happen. I am not one to go outside at night when I travel except for in major cities (Singapore, Bangkok)
[ Edit: Edited on 25-Mar-2015, at 05:21 by Mikew91 ]
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is an excellent resource that I use regularly for travel health advice: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel
I travel extensively in developing countries; and have not seen the need to get vaccinated for Japanese encephalitis.
In short: No need to worry.
To get the JEV shot or not is easier for me because but my medical plan pays for it. I do get the shots because I travel frequently around Thailand and nearby countries. I prefer to err on the side of caution.
(BTW. There is more than one shot.)
Rare doesn't mean never!
If you are a mosquito magnet (the guy who always gets more mosquito bites than your companions) you might need to take more precautions. At least take some of the basic precautions to avoid mosquito bites.
Do you feel lucky?
Yes, please read the information on the CDC's Web site, as Karazyal and I suggest. However, I note from your original post that you mostly will be visiting urban areas, where the risk of contracting the disease is less. Mosquitos are most active at dusk and dawn; and you mentioned that you are not one to go out at night; and if you do it will be in major cities, such as Bangkok and Singapore. The decision is up to you. You have to weigh the cost-benefit ratio. There are no guarantees in this life. I have traveled with people who took antimalarial medication; and they still contracted the disease. One simple solution is to wear long-sleeve shirts and pants. I do.
This recent information from the World Health Organization will provide insight: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs386/en/
I'm no expert or travel guru, but I think advice from your doctor should carry some extra weight. Safe journey!
[ Edit: Edited on 25-Mar-2015, at 08:43 by berner256 ]
Your doctor should be the person you listen to for medical advice.
If you want to worry about something read up on Dengue Fever. (No vaccine.)
Karazyal is right. Heed your doctor, who advised you not to worry about Japanese encephalitis.
Karazyal brings up dengue fever. Now, that's a problem. Note, however, that dengue fever outbreaks also have occurred in the United States in places such as Hawaii, Florida and Texas. The disease is transmitted by mosquitos. There is no vaccine. But there are several simple ways to protect yourself. As I mentioned before, wear long-sleeve shirts and long pants, particularly at dawn and dusk. Always protect yourself in shady areas. Use insect repellent; and mosquito netting over beds provided by many hotels and lodges in tropical areas. Wear light-colored clothing. Mosquitos are drawn to dark colors.
As everything in life, travel entails risk. And I suspect that most people, including myself, have trepidations before and during a trip. That's normal. But don't let those trepidations overwhelm you. Be smart. Get the facts. Think rationally. Use common sense.
I ended up getting the first vaccine.
My thinking was that I would regret it either way.
1. I get the vaccine and then arrive and realize I had nothing to worry about. Thus wasting money.
Or 2. I don't get the vaccine and probably worry about every single bite I get.
I'm a bit of a hypochondriac that way. Peace of mind comes at a price.
Also I decided I wanted to do a home stay in Vietnam in a rural area for a few days.!
Have a great trip! Remember to cover yourself at dawn and dusk.