What is Japanese Encephalitis?
Japanese Encephalitis is a viral disease, transmitted by mosquito bites, which can cause encephalitis (inflammation of the brain), and may lead to permanent brain damage or death. It is the leading cause of viral encephalitis in South-East Asia and the Far East.
What Are The Symptoms?
In most cases the disease does not produce any symptoms. In the small number of cases where symptoms appear severity varies. Mild infections are characterised by fever and headache. Severe cases can develop rapidly, with headaches, high fever and symptoms like those of meningitis. When encephalitis develops there is a 1 in 3 chance of death, and the survivors will have a 1 in 2 chance of being left with permanent disability.
How Is It Contracted?
The disease is most commonly transmitted by various species of Culex mosquito that become infected after feeding on infected pigs or birds.
Who Is At Most Risk?
The disease is extremely rare in travellers. The risk increases for travellers staying in rural and especially agricultural areas within the high risk regions listed below.
Where Are You At Risk?
Japanese encephalitis is found only in Asia - from India (and a small area in Pakistan) eastwards across Thailand, China, Korea, Japan, down through South-East Asia - and Northern Australia.
The highest transmission rates occur during and just after the wet seasons when the mosquitoes are most active.
The vaccine is recommended for anyone over one year of age who will be at increased risk. The usual vaccination schedule is a series of injections.
When Should You Be Vaccinated?
Check with your practice nurse as soon as you have decided where and when you will be travelling, and they will advise on an appropriate vaccination schedule for you. It is recommended that vaccination is completed 2 weeks prior to travel.
Does The Vaccine Have Any Side Effects?
Like most injections, some people may experience tenderness and redness at the site of the injection. Japanese Encephalitis cannot be contracted directly from the vaccine.
Source Of information
GlaxoSmithKline, Wikipedia, local doctors, local hospitals, newspaper articles, various.
Travel Related Diseases
Thailand is an incredibly photogenic country, both for its landscapes and its people. Regardless of whether you enjoy large Asian cities, beaches and islands, or rice fields and mountains, Thailand has something for you and it is a dream destination for photographers.
One of the great things about visiting Thailand is that hotels are plentiful and a lot cheaper than in most other countries. Each link on the right will take you to the relevant page on the Agoda website where you can see photos, read reviews, and book on-line. I tend to use Agoda to book all of my own hotels in Thailand and the Southeast Asia region. I generally find Agoda hotel rates to be the lowest and I have received good customer service, therefore I am happy to recommend the company to other people.
Booking.com used to be more expensive than Agoda, but when I have checked hotel prices recently I have found their rates to be quite competitive. Unlike Agoda, you don't need to pay at the time of booking with Booking.com - you can simply pay at the hotel when you check in. Also, Booking.com show you total prices whereas Agoda show you a price and then add on 17% for tax and service charge.
If you wish to compare prices between different on-line travel agents (OTAs) for a specific hotel, you can use a company such as HotelsCombined.
Images of Thailand