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                                                                                              PREPARATION > Health

My vaccination book (to be kept carefully because requested at the borders) is almost as full as my passport. To prick you with everything that is necessary (no small saving as some vaccines are very expensive) and, for cholera, just ask for the pills (unless an effective vaccine has been developed since then).

A visit to an Institute of Tropical Medicine is recommended (you’ll be told exactly which vaccine needs to be administered according to the areas you cover) just like the dentist, ophthalmologist, etc...

Eternal and difficult dilemma: for or against the anti-malaria pills? For a doctor the answer is undoubtedly categorical. For a trip of long duration, that seems difficult to me (side effects, supply and conservation…etc) and in any case not completely effective. After several weeks I threw away my stock of paludrine/chloroquine and only kept one tablet of Lariam in case of attack.   

Insect bites were inevitable. The mosquito net and the long sleeved T-shirt were my principal (although futile) protection in the evening.

The risks and possibilities of contracting something bizarre and exotic are evidently real and permanent. Prevent this as much as possible by common sense (vaccines, etc…). Reading under the heading “health” in a travel guide doesn’t really encourage you to leave your country…but nothing you can do about that…you have to live with it!

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