Medical

Apr 12th, 2019, 04:04 PM
  #1  
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Medical

I had my annual physical today and I told my PCP I was traveling to Peru. He suggested I get a Hep A shot and take some meds for Typhoid. Have any of you who have traveled to Peru got these medicines beforehand?
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Apr 12th, 2019, 05:59 PM
  #2  
kja
 
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I've had both, but not specifically for Peru. Did you have a specific question to which my experience would be relevant? Because as a rule, I would say that my experience shouldn't count for anything -- what matters is what YOUR doctor(s) recommend for YOU.

Have you checked the CDC website? You might find some useful information there. Traveling to Peru can involve exposure to some very nasty illnesses (e.g., yellow fever), for which consulting a specialist in travel medicine can prove useful.
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Apr 12th, 2019, 06:15 PM
  #3  
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Thanks. My doctor had/has a specialty in infectious diseases, so he went onto a website he has access to that gives me a lot of information about travelling in Peru. The CDC in 2017 recommended Hep A and Typhoid. He also showed me a map that showed the 'yellow fever' zones in Peru but my trip doesn't include those areas.
I believe this something I should take care of prior to my trip. So I would say he recommends the medications. I guess I answered my question, didn't I.
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Apr 12th, 2019, 06:47 PM
  #4  
kja
 
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Originally Posted by dhoffman14 View Post
I guess I answered my question, didn't I.
Sometimes we all need to write things out to get to an answer, don't we? ;-) Glad you got there.
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Apr 13th, 2019, 08:37 AM
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You might consider getting Hep A/B. Once you have the full series, you’re good for life. We did that in 2011 and have since been at least 3 or 4 places where the vaccines would have been recommended -Peru, Cuba, etc.

Typhoid is good for 2 or 5 years depending on whether you get the oral vaccine or the shot.
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Apr 18th, 2019, 09:31 PM
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Not sure where in Peru you will travel, but if you will be anywhere at high elevation (Cuzco, Lake Titicaca, Machu Picchu, etc.) be sure to look into meds for altitude sickness. I took the CDC recommended acetazolamide (brand name Diamox) prophylaxis and drank enough coca tea to float a battleship, still was not enough so I bough at a local pharmacy soroche pills (aspirin, caffeine and salophen which metabolizes to acetaminophen) and took that as well (1 capsule every 8 hours.) Still had to pay attention to staying hydrated and pace myself but did OK. Saw some folks who did nothing and were suffering mightily.
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Apr 19th, 2019, 06:57 AM
  #7  
 
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If you are going to Puno, I'd get the HepA/B combo if you have time (the latter is a multi-sequence shot and good for life). Probably Typhoid if offered. Not sure how clean all the fish that comes out of L Titicaca is. I had my one case of food poisoning in Peru in Puno, although it could have been something I picked up in La Paz. I had already been at much higher altitudes so it wasn't that.

I bring Advil for headache at altitude and also subscribe to the preventative Pepto Bismol regime for tummy issues. If you do Pepto, you can't take aspirin.

I avoid Tylenol (acetaminophen).

While some swear by acetazolamide (Diamox) I've never taken nor needed it. Just lucky with the amount of time off I could take and I try to sleep lower on the first nights (one or more in Ollantaytambo) then Cusco And Puno/L Titicaca after that. Rest up on arrival day for a few hours, have a light evening meal (not big dinner with alcohol). I drink the coca tea (love it). Don't give up caffeine entirely if you are an addict. Drink about 2L of water per day (you'll pee more as part of the process).

Shortness of breath going uphill is normal as is sleepiness and a little nausea The locals sometimes pop a sachet of sugar, or sniff some rubbing alcohol. Sipping on water and sucking candy works too. Headache is my common symptom the first day so I pop an Advil right away. Just walk slowly and try to breathe through your nose. . I took the train from Lima to Huancayo on a Mother's Day once and it was interesting watching the heads go down, and one kid upchucked in the aisle right next to my seat.

If you have more than mild symptoms don't hesitate to ask hotel for a little oxygen (especiallly common at night). Any dizziness is a more serious sign. Altitude is the great equalizer among hikers...don't expect acetazolamide to do anything other than to speed up the process. The good news is that when you get back hoome you'll be racing up that hill where you usually struggle.

Last edited by mlgb; Apr 19th, 2019 at 07:12 AM.
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