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Old Friday 12th January 2018, 11:30   #1
Stevie babe
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Health Advice for visiting Pantenal

Hi All,
Both my wife and I are really wanting to go visit the Pantenal region of Brazil but I have a problem and that is relating to the risk of Yellow fever in that region.
As I understand it Yellow Fever does exist there and is pretty much incurable. So I look up the prospect of taking the correct vaccination but the risk of adverse effects significantly increases with age especially once over the 60 year old threshold. I am now 67.
I think I may have had a Yellow Fever Vaccination back in the late 1980s for a trip to Egypt but that was done privately for work and those records no longer exist so I cannot be sure.
So:-
1/ need I risk going to Pantenal without a vaccination and hope I did indeed have the vaccination in the 80s or
2/ Have the vaccination and hope for no side effects or
3/ Am I over reacting.
(My wife has had the vaccination).

Any advise greatly appreciated especially from those who have actually been to the Pantenal and any medically trained reader.

Thank you
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Old Friday 12th January 2018, 12:25   #2
dwatsonbirder
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I have neither been to the Pantanal, nor am I a medically trained professional, but personally I would seek medical advise directly from a travel clinic. This website may answer a few questions for you in the interim though.

Have a great trip, I hope to make it to Brazil in the near future.
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Old Friday 12th January 2018, 13:04   #3
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The best (and possibly only) way of avoiding insect borne diseases such as yellow fever or malaria is to avoid getting bitten by insects. The general advice on using good repellent and covering bare skin is the best policy.
Most trips to Pantanal will run in the dry season for obvious reasons and insect numbers are very low so the risk of being bitten is very small.
My experience 3 years ago was exactly that ... we went in October (2014) and there were very few insects, even around the few remaining patches of water, and we never had a problem. My understanding is that yellow fever would be much more of a problem for the local resident population or people visiting during wet season and I didn't seriously consider having the vaccination for that trip.
I'm not medically trained so cannot comment on possible side effects.

I hope you decide to go (vaccinated or not) because it is a truly wonderful place.
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Old Friday 12th January 2018, 19:47   #4
ovenbird43
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Yellow Fever vaccination is supposedly only good for 10 years, so I would say even if you are sure you got the vaccine in the 80s it doesn't matter now.

I don't recall if we were advised to get the vaccine prior to our August 2010 trip to the Pantanal, but I'd already gotten it anyways for spending months in eastern Ecuador. I would look up current recommendations for the area - preventing mosquito bites may be sufficient for minimizing risk, especially during the dry season (it wasn't particularly buggy when we went). I personally would get the vaccine if it's recommended, but I'm relatively young and have never had an adverse reaction, you may rightfully have a different viewpoint.

It's an amazing place, I hope you get to go regardless!
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Old Friday 12th January 2018, 20:35   #5
andyadcock
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ovenbird43 View Post
Yellow Fever vaccination is supposedly only good for 10 years, so I would say even if you are sure you got the vaccine in the 80s it doesn't matter now.

It's an amazing place, I hope you get to go regardless!
No longer true, the latest opinion is that once vaccinated, you have life cover.

'Recent changes to yellow fever vaccine recommendations. In April 2013, the World Health Organization Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization concluded that a single primary dose of yellow fever vaccine is sufficient to confer sustained immunity and lifelong protection against yellow fever disease, and that a booster dose is not needed (9). This conclusion was based on a systematic review of published studies on the duration of immunity after a single dose of yellow fever vaccine, and on data that suggest vaccine failures are extremely rare and do not increase in frequency with time since vaccination (10). The advisory group noted that future studies and surveillance data should be used to identify specific risk groups, such as persons infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or infants, who might benefit from a booster dose. In May 2014, the World Health Assembly adopted the recommendation to remove the 10-year booster dose requirement from the International Health Regulations by June 2016 (11).'

Here's the full article from the American CDC which is a great resource for all the Americas.

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6423a5.htm


A

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Old Saturday 13th January 2018, 00:47   #6
ovenbird43
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Ah, thanks for the updated information Andy!
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