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. I always use Agoda to book hotels in Thailand. The company was established in Thailand and has great local knowledge, as well as a huge inventory of hotels.
If you click on one of the destinations opposite you will get a list of hotel deals from Agoda. It's generally a good idea to book on-line because you will get a good room rate and you won't suffer the disappointment of arriving at a hotel to find that it is full.
I book hotels regularly in Thailand and I have always found Agoda to be the best on-line travel agent. At times I have spent a lot of time researching hotel prices and although other deals sometimes look better at first I always end up returning to Agoda.
If you don't wish to pay for your hotel at the time of booking, Booking.com normally allows you to pay when you check in at the hotel. Some people prefer this method, but I have always found Booking.com to be more expensive than Agoda.
If you want to compare prices between different on-line travel agents (OTAs) for a specific hotel, you can use a company such as HotelsCombined. However, you will normally find that Agoda is the cheapest and therefore you can save yourself time and money by just booking through Agoda in the first place.
Images of Thailand