Immunizations in Costa Rica?

Old Dec 15th, 2005, 11:39 AM
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Immunizations in Costa Rica?

Do we need any specific shots? Arenal is the farthest north we are going. Has anyone gotten sick? malaria?
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 02:25 PM
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None needed for Costa Rica .... Of course this a personal decision , and u should question your doc.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 04:04 PM
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Hep A is recommended. Not a bad idea to have it anyway as Hep A can be anywhere--though it is more likely in Latin America (including CR) than in Canada, US, Western Europe, etc.

If you take a booster a few months after the first shot, you have lifetime immunity.
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 05:12 PM
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Uh Oh !! I guess we are rebels , more scared of the side effects of the vaccine than the slight chance of getting the disease . We are always thinking the big pharm. company's are doing a good job of making everyone think they need something .... Talk to your doc. , use your own judgement , and sift through advice here , Rufus is correct , lots of commercials point to needing Hep. A ....
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 06:21 PM
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The Hep A vaccine is a good one to get. It will prevent a pretty damn bad sickness. It's the one you get from ingesting nasties that are on the food or in the water. Pretty prevalant stuff if you headed south of the USA or into Asia. I personally would not get the Hep B vaccine. Hep B is the the sharing needles, Sex with men, close contact one. If you manage your risk factors it can be easily avoided. Even if you do get it you will recover and be protected from ever getting it again.

Another thing to consider is the risk involved in taking the vaccine itself. There are reactions to the B vaccine that are nothing short of devastating. They are rare but can be much worse than the disease. I have not heard much on the possible side effects of the A vaccine.
I hope this helps
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Old Dec 15th, 2005, 07:47 PM
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As has been mentioned no vaccine is required for Costa Rica.

It would be prudent for you to have a Flu vaccine about now.

What many people do not know is this:

The Flu season is from November to May in ther Northern Hemisphere...

It is from April to September in the Southern Hemisphere..
BUT ..
It is year round in the Tropics. !!

Remember also that one of your biggest risks of getting the Flu is at the airport and on the plane..

If you are a regular traveller to the Caribbean and Mexico and Latin America..

then it is wise to have the Hepatitis A and Hepetitis B vaccine.

Hepatitis A is very prevalent and easy to get whether you stay at a 5 star major resort or an "off the beaten track "place.

Let me tell you something else,.. Hepatitis A vaccine comes in a series of two shots.

The first shot gives very good protection for a year or more...then second shot imparts life long immunity..

That is why you get two shots 6 months apart.

I mention this only to point out that such is not the case with Hepatitis B.

Many people like to think that Hepatitis B is a "life style" disease.... and if I avoid the "life style" then I will not get infected.

You could wind up having to get treatment in a hospital or dental work in another country where sanitary measures are not what we are accustomed to here in North America.

The thing with Hepatitis B is that once you get the infection you may carry to the virus FOREVER.!!!

This vaccine comes in a series of THREE shots.
The first two shots offer immunity of about 90-94 %.

It is the third shot that conveys life long immunity.

Last year I decide to find out just how my Hepatitis A&B status was.

So I got some blood work done and my Antibody titre to Hepatitis A was over 250 , anything over 10 conveys immunity.

You know what that means.!! It means that somewhere along the road in life I got Hepatitis A and had a sufficent antibody titre...so I was find.

Then I check my Hepatitis B and the antibody level was zero!!!

I took the complete series of shots for the Hepatitis B vaccine.

With Hepatitis B it is the chronic carrier state that you could fall into and worse yet ... the slow and progressive liver damage you get.

Finally, it is worth to mention that of all the Liver Disease that a person can get.....
Only Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B can be fully prevented by a vaccine.

You do not have to do anything.... this is just information about the vaccines.

Percy





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Old Dec 16th, 2005, 04:25 AM
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faithie--just a thought.

Millions of people used to die or develop lifetime disabilities every year from diseases that can now be prevented by immunization and other medications.

Yes, an very small percentage of people have side effects from these treatments--and an even smaller fraction of this small percentage will have significant side effects.

But compared to the potential risk from the diseases, the potential risk from vaccines and medications is well worth it.
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Old Dec 16th, 2005, 04:40 AM
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Rufus .... thanx for the thoughts , obviously info. I have read many times . I am equally well informed on both sides of the camp . No-where did I say I was against ALL vaccines .......
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Old Dec 16th, 2005, 05:27 AM
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Oh !!! lol , And as I allready stated in the 2 previous posts , the OP should consult their Doc. to make a well informed decision .... P.S. Percy ... we're having a " Happy snow Day !! "
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Old Dec 16th, 2005, 06:30 AM
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faithie--got it.
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Old Dec 16th, 2005, 07:56 AM
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faithie:

Yes,I see on TV news that you are getting a lot of snow in your area..so is the North Eastern USA.

We are cold here but very little snow.

RufusTFirefly:

Enjoyed your comments

Take Care and stay warm!!!

Percy
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Old Dec 16th, 2005, 12:05 PM
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Interesting discussion! We are going to CR next week and I had asked our DR about immunizations including Hep A. He said that since we are going to touristy areas in CR he didn't think it was necessary. He did say to have the shots if we were concerned but since we're not, we didn't. This DR tends to be very cautious so I was surprised with his reply.............!
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