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Vaccines before going to Cambodia

Do we need Vaccines/meds before entering Cambodia?
6 years ago, May 22nd 2013 No: 1 Msg: #170941  
Hello, my husband and I will be crossing into Cambodia by train through the Poipett boarder (from Bangkok Thailand) and will be staying in Siem Reap for 3 days max to see Angkor. Im getting mixed info about whether or not I should get malaria or dengue fever medications/vaccinations. Is Deet insect repellent enough protection for 3 days in Cambodia? Or should we see our doctors and get those meds before we go? We arent going on any safaris so the remainder of the time spent there will be around the Siem Reap downtown/city... Would really appreciate any advice on this topic! Reply to this

6 years ago, May 22nd 2013 No: 2 Msg: #170942  
Would also like to add that the time we are going is beginning of October... If that makes any difference in the responses... Reply to this

6 years ago, May 22nd 2013 No: 3 Msg: #170960  
The CDC website states "Areas with malaria: Present throughout the country, except none at the temple complex at Angkor Wat, Phnom Penh, and around Lake Tonle Sap." Hope this helps. Have a great trip, and remember to blog! Reply to this

6 years ago, May 23rd 2013 No: 4 Msg: #170975  
B Posts: 364
I don't think you can get anything for Dengue Fever except to avoid mosquitoes. But I am not a doctor, for medical advice you should seek advice from a doctor.

Some people going into malaria zones can use Doxycycline. You can buy doxy cheap in Thai pharmacies without prescription. Check with your doctor if this will do for you.

Staying in hotels with A/C will help avoid mosquitoes when you are sleeping. With A/C on you have the windows shut. Fan rooms often have holes in the window screens large enough for mosquitoes to enter rooms.

If you are a bug magnet (a person who always gets more bug bites than everyone else around him or her) you might be better off with long sleeves, long pants and liberal amounts of Deet.

Good luck.
[Edited: 2013 May 23 03:38 - Sir Halberd:61719 - typo]
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6 years ago, May 23rd 2013 No: 5 Msg: #170980  
Thanks for your responses! I didn't know that there wasn't a vaccine for the dengue fever... So that option is obviously ruled out. I guess my best hope is to protect myself like "Sir Halberd" said, by applying lots of Deet and wearing clothes that cover me up... which would also help protect from UV exposure and insuring im modest enough for the temples, knock 3 birds with one stone. I wonder how much malarial meds in Thailand cost, i will have to check that out. Thanks again! Reply to this

6 years ago, May 23rd 2013 No: 6 Msg: #170995  
B Posts: 364
"I wonder how much malarial meds in Thailand cost...."


Doxy is cheap. From around 4 baht per capsule to 10 baht per capsule depending on where made.

Check with your doctor to see if this will work for you.

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6 years ago, May 25th 2013 No: 7 Msg: #171080  
When I was younger and had more respect for myself I used to get doxycycline in Bangkok for about 10 baht a capsule. Then I got to the point where I was doing so much extensive travelling around south east Asia that I lapsed and didn't bother anymore, I thought to myself what about all the locals that live here on a more permanent basis, the majority of those won't be on meds and they have not all died of Malaria otherwise they wouldn't exist as a people! So I went down that route and now I just don't bother. And I've spent a lot of time in high risk zones, not just a few days.

I am of course not endorsing this route as I have met a couple of other travellers who have contracted Malaria and for all intensive purposes it comes across as a shite disease to contract, which disease isn't? I've also met folk who have had breakbone (Dengue)fever and have myself been living in Dengue Fever epidemic zones within Cambodia, obviously not too much you can do in that instance in regards to dengue, but I do always religiously try my best at deeting up, to some degree this works but you will still more than likely get bitten at some point, theres no stopping the bastard things really. So inevitably it will be down to your own personal choice, you have to think if your only there a few days then chances are slim. BUT....for the sake of self assurance you might want to consider the meds. Of course this is not professional advice, thats what doctors are for! Hope a bit of this helps. Reply to this

6 years ago, May 25th 2013 No: 8 Msg: #171081  
I agree with Daniel. Everyone has a different tolerance to risk, so if the odds are small then many will take the risk, while taking precautions to reduce the risk further.

From personal experience, I lived in Southeast Asia for 18 years, and took the risk. After 17 years I contracted Dengue Fever. But that was nothing compared to an inner ear infection I caught from swimming that had me flat on my back with vertigo for two weeks.

My wife lived in Thailand with me for two and a half years and contracted malaria in Chiang Mai, which reoccurs at random times; once when we were in Jordan and the second time the night her dad died. My Dad lived in Thailand for 36 years and contracted malaria after 25. My Mom never contracted it. Just saying, the odds are small and the diseases survivable. Reply to this

6 years ago, May 26th 2013 No: 9 Msg: #171089  
I really appreciate all the personal info you guys have shared on this topic, i feel bad for your loved ones who have contracted Malaria but am surprised it took so long for them to get it. I was looking for these kinds of examples to make my decision easier, so thanks guys Reply to this

6 years ago, June 2nd 2013 No: 10 Msg: #171366  
Myself, my husband and 10 year old travelled there in November/December last year. We had no vaccinations but slathered ourselves in DEET. You can purchase 80% DEET there for a lot less than I could buy in Australia. I preferred that option, after discussing the side effects of vaccinations.
Mosquitoes did not bother us while we were there. Also, the hotel we were staying in did some spraying too - so, I think we were fairly safe. Make sure you look at ALL options, side affects, costs etc.... Reply to this

6 years ago, June 2nd 2013 No: 11 Msg: #171368  
Excellent feedback, thanks for your advice, after reading everyones comments I think tons of Deet and covered up skin is the way we are going 😊 Reply to this

6 years ago, June 12th 2013 No: 12 Msg: #171711  
Even though you asked specifically about malaria and dengue, I'd suggest you also get vaccinated against Hepatitis A and B. And EVERYONE, whether travelling or not, should make sure their tetanus booster is up-to-date.

Today, tetanus is usually administered as TDap, which stands for tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (whooping cough.) Tetanus is a serious disease that can cause muscle spasms so severe as to break bones. Don't take the chance. Reply to this

6 years ago, June 13th 2013 No: 13 Msg: #171719  
That is a good point too Karen, thanks for bringing that up. Fortunately working in the medical field Its required for me to be up to date on all those Hep's, mumps, etc... I have to double check with my husband to see what he needs, cause like you said, its not something you should mess with! Reply to this

6 years ago, June 18th 2013 No: 14 Msg: #171905  
Hi Jennifer,

I agree with the above in terms of other vaccines. As far as malaria goes you always have to check if risks outweigh the side effects. We went through all SE Asia including risk areas without any anti-malaria pills and only practiced common sense. If there was a risk we would have used DEET and cover up at sunset.

You will be absolutely fine in Cambodia:-) Enjoy as it is a great place.


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