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View Poll Results: Would you get Rabies Vaccinations for an around the world?

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  • Yes

    12 48.00%
  • No

    13 52.00%
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  1. #1
    Senior Member eric von zipper's Avatar
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    Rabies Vaccination

    For an around the world trip? Yes? No? If I do it, it will be $150.00 per jab and I need 3 jabs.
    Surly Cross Check, Thorn Sherpa

  2. #2
    jwa
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    http://www2.ncid.cdc.gov/travel/yb/u...sNav=browseoyb
    "...Travelers to rabies-endemic countries should be warned about the risk of acquiring rabies, although rabies vaccination is not a requirement for entry into any country. Travelers with extensive unprotected outdoor exposure in rural areas, such as might be experienced while bicycling, camping, hiking, or engaging in certain occupational activities, might be at high risk even if their trip is brief...."


    See also http://www.cdc.gov/travel/destinat.htm

  3. #3
    Punk Rock Lives Roughstuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eric von zipper
    For an around the world trip? Yes? No? If I do it, it will be $150.00 per jab and I need 3 jabs.
    $450 bucks? What are the needles made out of, antimatter? Contact a travel clinic...they will be far more reasonable. I don't recall paying anywhere near that much for a series of shots for rabies, yellow fever, pneumonia, and various other things.

    Hmmm...i got four jabs, once in each arm two times. Its not as expensive as it looks. Without it you'll need a more expensive regimen of shots after a bite, and you will need it much more urgently than if you got the pre-shots. In some areas you should be reluctant to let anyone stock a needle in your arm...getting HIV or hepatitis from a rabies preventative is a piss poor bargain. The pre-shots will give ya time to get to civilization if ya need it.

    You'll be out on the trip for 2 years, maybe more? reasonable investment to me.

    roughstuff
    Last edited by Roughstuff; 04-10-07 at 10:17 PM.
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  4. #4
    VWVagabonds.com Losligato's Avatar
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    Funny you should ask this question. I've been debating this vaccination for years. Amanda has been bitten/attacked by monkeys twice (yes twice, once in Kenya and once in Thailand) since we've been on the road.

    Now we are in Bangkok where we can get the vaccination from the Thai Travel Clinic (part of the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Bangkok) at a fraction of the U.S. cost (rabies costs $9), yet Amanda is hesitant to get it (imagine that!)... and so am I, to some extent.
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  5. #5
    sth
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    Quote Originally Posted by Losligato
    Funny you should ask this question. I've been debating this vaccination for years. Amanda has been bitten/attacked by monkeys twice (yes twice, once in Kenya and once in Thailand) since we've been on the road.

    Now we are in Bangkok where we can get the vaccination from the Thai Travel Clinic (part of the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Bangkok) at a fraction of the U.S. cost (rabies costs $9), yet Amanda is hesitant to get it (imagine that!)... and so am I, to some extent.
    Why are you hesitant? Is it putting chemicals your body or needles in a foreign country?

  6. #6
    Senior Member filtersweep's Avatar
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    What are you doing about malaria? I am not a big fan of the malaria tablets, and I know someone who went temporarily crazy from taking them (couldn't sleep for weeks).

  7. #7
    VWVagabonds.com Losligato's Avatar
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    Why are you hesitant? Is it putting chemicals your body or needles in a foreign country?
    No, I have confidence in the Thai Travel Clinic. I do not feel too good about vaccinations in general and live vaccines in particular.

    A few years ago I read the book "The River" about development of the Polio vaccine. They used monkey kidneys to attenuate the virus and inadvertently infected millions of Americans with SV40 (Simian Virus 40) which is though to cause certain cancers.

    We took a version of the malaria medication Lariam (Mefloquine) for the first few months in Africa but realized that it was counterproductive to take a medication for years and discontinued it. We carried along the most common cure (can't remember which) for malaria along with test kits in case we suspected infection. In the end we were never infected.
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  8. #8
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    Well, we got the Rabies jabs in London before we left, along with a host of others. As it was explained to us, if you don't have the jab and you are bitten you have to get something like 6 post-bite jabs instead of 2 if you've been vaccinated (this is from memory so don't shoot me if I am slightly fuzzy or wrong on details but this is what I remember) and also the type of jabs you need if you have not been vaccinated are different and possibly harder to find in some countries. Finally, you have less time to get these jabs if you have not been vaccinated. We thought all this together made getting the rabies vaccine worth it as if we are bitten by a dog we do not want to minimise the risk of not finding what we need in remote areas! It's your health, who cares what it costs.
    We blog about bike touring, with reviews, tips and cycle touring podcasts at Travelling Two

  9. #9
    Senior Member eric von zipper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roughstuff
    $450 bucks? What are the needles made out of, antimatter? Contact a travel clinic...they will be far more reasonable. I don't recall paying anywhere near that much for a series of shots for rabies, yellow fever, pneumonia, and various other things.

    Hmmm...i got four jabs, once in each arm two times. Its not as expensive as it looks. Without it you'll need a more expensive regimen of shots after a bite, and you will need it much more urgently than if you got the pre-shots. In some areas you should be reluctant to let anyone stock a needle in your arm...getting HIV or hepatitis from a rabies preventative is a piss poor bargain. The pre-shots will give ya time to get to civilization if ya need it.

    You'll be out on the trip for 2 years, maybe more? reasonable investment to me.

    roughstuff
    The $150 per jab quote was from the travel clinic at the county Health Dept. I'll call the only other travel clinic in town to see what they charge.

    Thanks for the advice, all. I think I've decided to go ahead with the vaccinations.
    Surly Cross Check, Thorn Sherpa

  10. #10
    Punk Rock Lives Roughstuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by filtersweep
    What are you doing about malaria? I am not a big fan of the malaria tablets, and I know someone who went temporarily crazy from taking them (couldn't sleep for weeks).

    The malaria medication you are referring to is MEFLOQUINE, known also by its brand name, LARIAM. There are just so many stories about weird dreams, psychotic episodes, whatever, that I would not take it even as a last resort.

    Most people take Chloroquine tablets once a week when i malaria areas (a few weeks before, a few weeks after). If you think you caught it, Doxycycline is a good broad spectrum antibiotic to take until you can get to a clinic, diagnosed, and medicated. Just stay out of the bright sunlight with Doxy or you'll look like a boiled lobster.

    There are chloroquine resistant strains; and this is what I got when I was in Pakistan on my world tour. You have to use a medication which is different than the prophylactic, since obviously the strain is immune to it.

    roughstuff
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  11. #11
    Senior Member eric von zipper's Avatar
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    The $150 doesn't seem so bad after talking with the other Travel Clinic in town--$190.00 per shot plus whatever the office visit costs!

    I have an appointment at the county Health's clinic for the 26th (I leave to start my tour on May 21). Any other advice before I go is appreciated.
    Surly Cross Check, Thorn Sherpa

  12. #12
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    This, question of vaccinations has been of interest to me lately as well. I am still in the process of deciding where i will tour. Does anyone know of any good resources that would have reliable information about reccomended vaccinations and health risks associated with various areas?

    -keith

  13. #13
    Punk Rock Lives Roughstuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kennethj
    This, question of vaccinations has been of interest to me lately as well. I am still in the process of deciding where i will tour. Does anyone know of any good resources that would have reliable information about reccomended vaccinations and health risks associated with various areas?

    -keith
    Again, there is probably a local travel clinic in your area. You are gonna have to go to them anyway, so ya may as well dig em right up and ask. Some of the vaccinations have to spaced a few weeks apart; and others take a while to order to or take effect; so it probably pays to look into earlier rather than later. I got malaria, yellow fever, rabies, pneumonia, and boosters for tetanus and TB. I wanted to get a smallpox boost but wasn't able to.

    Keep in mind you can get rabies from exposure to airborne animal saliva as well as by being bitten, so if you are a spelunker (think: caveman!) or going to areas where poorly ventilated farm buildings etc, exist, be careful.

    roughstuff
    Last edited by Roughstuff; 04-11-07 at 07:02 PM.
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  14. #14
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    I would get it-
    but first i would make sure i had tetanus, hepatitis, meningitis, plus a supply of
    anti-malarial medicine (if going anywhere tropical). carry a small bottle of hydrogen
    peroxide as a topical antiseptic for those cuts and scrapes you will probably get, just
    pour a little on when you get the cut.

  15. #15
    Punk Rock Lives Roughstuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by martianone
    I would get it-
    but first i would make sure i had tetanus, hepatitis, meningitis, plus a supply of
    anti-malarial medicine (if going anywhere tropical). carry a small bottle of hydrogen
    peroxide as a topical antiseptic for those cuts and scrapes you will probably get, just
    pour a little on when you get the cut.

    Martianone what have you heard about how effective the shots are against Hep A? I have heard they don't work that well. I have gotten the Hep B shots over the years, for other reasons; but my doctor told me the Hep A (Gamma Globulin) treatments are only so-so.

    Hyrdogen peroxide is good; tincture of iodine is also nice to have and can double as a water purifier in a pinch.

    roughstuff
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  16. #16
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    Roughstuff-
    it is my understanding the Hep A vaccine is effective and most effective when given
    in two doses, about 6-12 months apart. Given that Hep A is usually mild and self limiting, also
    that in US about 50-75% of the population has detectable antibody (almost 100% antibody pos in
    endemic areas), not sure how helpful Hep A vaccine is; but would definately use the water purifier and careful about eating anything raw.
    I would and did get Hep B vaccine.

  17. #17
    Punk Rock Lives Roughstuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by martianone
    Roughstuff-
    it is my understanding the Hep A vaccine is effective and most effective when given
    in two doses, about 6-12 months apart. Given that Hep A is usually mild and self limiting, also
    that in US about 50-75% of the population has detectable antibody (almost 100% antibody pos in
    endemic areas), not sure how helpful Hep A vaccine is; but would definately use the water purifier and careful about eating anything raw.
    I would and did get Hep B vaccine.
    Ok..that explains why I didn't get it...the spread was too great, i wuld have been on the tour by the time the 2nd does came along. I was careful to make sure everything I ate was cooked; or that the water was bottled.

    roughstuff
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  18. #18
    VWVagabonds.com Losligato's Avatar
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    Today we got the first of three vaccinations against rabies at the International Travel Medicine Clinic. According to the doctor, we will be almost completely protected against rabies after the complete course of shots. Each injection cost 550 baht, about $16US.

    Since we will soon be in Tibet/Nepal (where dogs are notoriously vicious) and India (where 1/2 the worldwide cases of rabies occur) we felt it was a wise decision.

    Here is a list of travel clinics worldwide.
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  19. #19
    Senior Member eric von zipper's Avatar
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    Thanks for the link to the clinics around the world, Losligato. I was just about to start searching for it!

    Had my 2nd rabies jab today. Along with the 2nd Japanese Encephalitis.

    As it stand so far for me. Jabs:
    Yellow Fever
    2 out of 3-Rabies
    2 out of 3-Japanese Encephalitis
    Influenza
    Tetanus
    Hepatitis A
    Hepatitis B
    Polio Booster
    Meningitis
    Pills:
    1 out of 4 Typhoid
    Malaria (not until later on down the road.)

    Btw, 19 days until I leave! But in reality it seems this journey started a long time ago.
    Surly Cross Check, Thorn Sherpa

  20. #20
    Senior Member Lolly Pop's Avatar
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    Eric, glad you are protecting yourself. Sounds like a wise move.

    I am curious however, why your GP can't give you these shots?

    I had a booster in 1996, and a follow up booster in 2006. (It was free from my doctor because of socialised medicine.) However, in the US I would just imagine your own doctor could give it to you. Is this not the case?

    Here's a link to some interesting info about booster shots: Immunizations recommended for travel outside Canada

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