Tropical Disease Facts

Where are Tropical Diseases Occurring and How Do You Prevent Contracting Them?

The only vaccine that had been licensed in the United States for cholera has been discontinued because the risk for cholera to U.S. travelers has been so law as to make the benefit of receiving a vaccine questionable due to its brief immunity.

Cholera has spread from Indonesia through most of Asia and Eastern Europe and also Africa, North Africa to the Iberian Peninsula. There was an epidemic that began in Peru and quickly spread to other countries in the Western Hemisphere. There were almost 185,000 cases of cholera reported to the World Health Organization (WHO).

The only vaccine that had been licensed in the United States for cholera has been discontinued because the risk for cholera to U.S. travelers has been so law as to make the benefit of receiving a vaccine questionable due to its brief immunity. There are no countries requiring a vaccination to enter the country. If local authority requires a vaccine, then a single oral dose may be given to satisfy any local requirements. As a preventative those traveling to cholera- affected areas should avoid eating high-risk foods, such as fish and shellfish. Food that is safe to eat are those that are served hot and fruits and vegetables that are peeled by the traveler personally. Ice and beverages should be made from boiled or chlorinated water. Carbonated beverages are also safe to drink.

A viral disease that is mosquito-borne and appears similar to flu is yellow fever. You will only see yellow fever in sub-Saharan Africa and tropical South America. Africa has the majority of the reported cases of yellow fever. The main culprit behind the spread of yellow fever is vectors. Children and infants have the highest risk for infection. Forests areas of Bollivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru are also high risk areas for yellow fever. Avoid known yellow fever areas and avoid being bitten by mosquitos and avoid vectors.

Malaria is perhaps the most well known of all the tropical diseases. It can be serious even fatal and is caused by a parasite. There are actually 4 kinds of malaria that can infect humans - Plasmodium falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale, and P. malariae.

Tropical Infectious Diseases

Opportunities usually exist for topics that are more wide-spread like balding hair concerns rather than tropical diseases that only affect a smaller number of countries, especially when those countries are poor without political or economic clout. Two elements that Africa has are the dramatic birth rates and the substandard living conditions of the people of Africa. Tropical Infectious Diseases

There are 100 countries and territories that malaria can be contracted. The largest areas of infection for malaria are Brasil, Central and South America, Haiti and the Dominican Republic, Africa, the Indian subcontinent, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and Oceania.

Malaria-infected mosquitoes cause malaria. Preventing infection requires that you avoid being bitten by mosquitoes and by taking prophylactics antimalaria preparation.

Mosquitoes are also responsible for transmitting dengue fever. The high risk times are seasonal especially shortly after and during the rainy season. The risk occurs in both rural and urban areas. Dengue fever happens only in endemic regions and as periodic epidemics.

Lymphatic filariasis is transmitted by adult worms. This disease affects approximately 120 million individuals in the tropical regions of the world, especially sub-Saharan Africa, Egypt, southern Asia, the western Pacific islands, the northeastern coasts of South

and Central America and the Caribbean islands. Avoiding mosquitoes is how to prevent this disease and to avoid areas where infection is active.

Sand flies are responsible for the transmission of Leishmaniasis, a parasitic disease. The skin sores that signal the disease appear within weeks or months after being bitten. The disease is prevalent in Bangladesh, Brasil, India, Nepal and Sudan. It occasionally shows up in northern Argentina, southern Texas in the U.S., northern Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Those who are out between dusk and dawn are at highest risk. To prevent Leishmaniasis wear protective clothing and use insect repellent. Placing permethrin on bed netting, window screens and clothing can deter sand flies.


Better Your Health


What are Tropical Diseases
Are You Aware of the Neglected Tropical Diseases
Preventing Tropical Diseases
Prevention and Treatment for Common Tropical Diseases
The Six Neglected Tropical Diseases
Tropical Disease and Africa
Tropical Diseases in Brasil
What Every Traveler Should Know About Preventing Tropical Disease
What is Dengue Fever
Where are Tropical Diseases Occurring
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