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Staying Healthy on the Road Medical info, e.g. malaria, vaccinations, travel medical tips, medical insurance, where to find a doctor.
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  #1  
Old 15 Oct 2015
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Malaria tablets in South America?

Hi all, we kind of have a dilemma now! We start our RTW trip from South America (Argentina) and up through all the SA countries up to North America.

We've been told by our GP that we have to take Malaria tablets
while we travel through most of South America. Is this really necessary?
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  #2  
Old 15 Oct 2015
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Depends on what you mean by "all the SA countries." Also depends on your personal risk tolerance.

I took antimalarials in all or parts of Brazil, French Guiana, Suriname, and Guyana. Pretty sure I took them through Venezuela and Colombia, too, since I know I was on them coming up through Panama.

The prevalence of malaria is way lower than in much of Africa and southern Asia, but it's still worth paying attention. Don't forget to give due consideration to dengue as well.

Hope that's helpful.

Mark
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  #3  
Old 15 Oct 2015
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We carry Doxicycline, but I haven't bothered anywhere so far from the bottom to Colombia including part of the Pantanal. Risk is seasonal.
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  #4  
Old 15 Oct 2015
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Thank you Mark, we ship our bikes from UK to Argentina - Buenos Aires, then to Chile, Bolivia, Peru, Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela maybe Panama then ship bikes to Mexico and ride all the way to Canada.


Quote:
Originally Posted by markharf View Post
Depends on what you mean by "all the SA countries." Also depends on your personal risk tolerance.

I took antimalarials in all or parts of Brazil, French Guiana, Suriname, and Guyana. Pretty sure I took them through Venezuela and Colombia, too, since I know I was on them coming up through Panama.

The prevalence of malaria is way lower than in much of Africa and southern Asia, but it's still worth paying attention. Don't forget to give due consideration to dengue as well.

Hope that's helpful.

Mark
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  #5  
Old 9 Dec 2015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kkbs View Post
Hi all, we kind of have a dilemma now! We start our RTW trip from South America (Argentina) and up through all the SA countries up to North America.

We've been told by our GP that we have to take Malaria tablets
while we travel through most of South America. Is this really necessary?
Here's the CDC take on it:
CDC - Malaria - Travelers - Malaria Information and Prophylaxis, by Country
CDC - Malaria - Travelers - Choosing a Drug to Prevent Malaria

My personal non medically qualified opinions:

I agree with the poster who said it depends on personal risk tolerance. Level of risk is affected by your age, health, etc.

Ive been living in South America a long time and have traveled extensively down here (Argentina, Columbia, Bolivia, Venezuela . . .) and I've never used malaria medicine and Ive never had malaria. Honestly I worry more about Chagas than malaria. Well ... not really worry ... but I know what the carrier bugs look like, I avoid them, and I know not to scratch and to carefully clean the site if I get bit. My guess is that you have a bigger chance of getting chikungunya and dengue than malaria.

Urban areas have less risk of malaria because of critter control. Higher altitudes have less to no risk cause mosquitos thin out and disappear as altitude goes up.

All I really do is use mosquito repellant as needed and try not to get bit, and know symptoms so I can get to a doctor (though that has never been necessary).

I believe that keeping your immune system up is always a good idea while traveling ... diet. vitamin C, fiber, probiotics, good nights sleep . . .
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  #6  
Old 14 Dec 2015
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I carried Dox, but didn't take them. Didn't really see any mozzies, so I guess I never thought about it.

Agree about trying to keep your immune system good (sleep is important), but everyone's level of risk management varies. Do what you're comfortable with, and go.
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  #7  
Old 5 Jan 2016
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I have some 300mg Quinine Sulphide tablets BP. Going free if any one want's then. Will only post with-in the royal mail service. As I'm in the UK.
John933
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Old 5 Jan 2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John933 View Post
I have some 300mg Quinine Sulphide tablets BP. Going free if any one want's then. Will only post with-in the royal mail service. As I'm in the UK.
John933
Quinine sulphate is curative, not a prophylaxis. It can be dangerous with concurrent liver or kidney damage, and it can be dangerous in the presence of other meds, including common ones like metronidazole. There's lots more, and I'm no expert--I'm just offering a serious cautionary note for anyone tempted to dispense such stuff to strangers without adequate training and experience. Do your research carefully, and don't entrust your health to well-meaning folks on the internet....including me.

Mark
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  #9  
Old 5 Jan 2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markharf View Post
Quinine sulphate is curative, not a prophylaxis. It can be dangerous with concurrent liver or kidney damage, and it can be dangerous in the presence of other meds, including common ones like metronidazole. There's lots more, and I'm no expert--I'm just offering a serious cautionary note for anyone tempted to dispense such stuff to strangers without adequate training and experience. Do your research carefully, and don't entrust your health to well-meaning folks on the internet....including me.

Mark
Take that on-board folk's. But they are still going free. Ask your doctor if they will do what you have in mind.
John933
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To buy petrol in Europe. Pull up at station. Wait. Get out a 20 Euro note, then ask someone to fill up the bike. Give person money. Ride away. Simple.
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