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Malaria in Central/South America

Travel Forums Central/South America & The Caribbean Malaria in Central/South America

1. Posted by emilybrit (Budding Member 61 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

Can anyone give any advice on Malaria tabs needed for Central/South America.. has anyone been and not taken them?? The following were advised by the travel nurse.. anyone got any feedback if you've been there and taken these?

Doxy - South America
Chloroquine - Central America

Cheers guys, any help would be appreciated :)

2. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

Hi Emily,

Your request for anti-malarial information concerning both Central and South America is a bit broad since they comprise a large piece of real estate. If you can give a bit of your itinerary, it will help members taylor their responses for those areas a bit more easily. With that said, I'll comment from a broader perspective. Oh, and just to be fair before I go on, there are members who travel both Central and South America extensively without ever taking an anti-malarial medication. It all comes down to a matter of personal choice that only you can make.

Central America - Chloroquine (which is a member of the quinine family of drugs) is prescribed because CA has not seen an influx of Chloroquine-resistant malaria at this time. It is a very effective medication and the drug of choice if you were only to travel in CA. (Dosage and timeline are: Chloroquine is taken once weekly, starting 1-2 weeks prior to travel, continued for the duration of the travel time and ending 4 weeks after leaving the malarial area. The medication should be taken on the same day of every treatment week.)

South America - Doxycycline is prescribed because SA does have several areas of Chloroquine-resistant malaria. Doxy is also a very effective medication and can be taken for up to 2 years duration non-stop. It is also very effective in Central America as there are no strains of Doxy-resistant malaria (anywhere) at this time. (Dosage and timeline are: Doxycycline is taken once daily, starting 1-2 days prior to travel, continued for the duration of the travel time and ending 4 weeks after leaving the malarial area.)

Since both medications are taken for 4 weeks after leaving a malarial area, Doxy would be the drug of choice for both CA and SA. You can not take Chloroquine and Doxy at the same time (ie: finish up the Chloroquine while starting the Doxy).

For more information about anti-malarials, areas of concern, side effects and links to other sites (CDC, WHO, Mayo Clinic) look at the TP Wiki Travel Guide - Malaria.

Also, here are three threads where similar questions have been asked. (There are quite a few threads but they tend to run in streaks and these three are the most recent.)

Malaria
rabies and malaria
immunisations required?

Personally, I would opt for taking an anti-malarial and I would choose Doxy. But, I'm also someone who forgets to use insect repellent on a regular basis.

Hope this helps and enjoy your adventure!

3. Posted by emilybrit (Budding Member 61 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

That answer couldn't be more perfect... thank u so much :)

Definitely gonna opt for doxy, I'm not hardcore enough to go without any at all!

Less than six weeks to go... arrghhh, can't wait.. thanks again, em :)

4. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

You are more than welcome, Emily.

Send a PM to me if you need any other help or information. Again, enjoy your travels!