What is it?
Yellow fever is a serious and sometimes fatal viral disease that is spread through the bite of certain types of mosquito, but mainly the Aedes aegypti species. The vast majority of all yellow fever instances are in sub-Saharan Africa (countries to the south of the Sahara), however yellow fever is endemic in several South and Central American countries.
There are also instances of transmission reported on several Caribbean islands. It occurs in both jungle and urban areas as the mosquitoes that spread the disease live and breed in both environments.
Countries at risk…
Yellow fever occurs mainly in African countries to the south of the Sahara Desert and in tropical parts of South and Central American countries.
Nearly all affected countries require proof of yellow fever vaccination in the form of an International Certificate of Vaccination before they allow a traveller to enter the country. Failure to provide a valid certificate is taken very seriously and will normally lead to a traveller being quarantined, immunised or denied entry.
The risk of acquiring yellow fever is determined by the travel destination and its intensity level of yellow fever transmission, season of travel, duration of travel and activities allowing exposure to mosquitoes.
There is no effective treatment for yellow fever but can be preventable by getting a yellow fever vaccination before visiting a destination in which the virus is known to exist. Travellers to areas at risk may require a single dose injection of Stamaril. Stamaril is a yellow fever vaccine that contains a live, weakened form of the yellow fever virus. It works by stimulating the body’s immune response to this virus, without causing the disease.
Signs and symptoms
The first phase of yellow fever includes symptoms such as fever, muscle pain, headache, shivers, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting. After three to four days most patients improve, and their symptoms disappear.
However, within 24 hours of apparent recovery, some patients progress to a more serious stage of the illness involving jaundice, haemorrhagic fever and deterioration of kidney function. Approximately 50% of patients developing the more severe symptoms will die within 7-10 days after the onset.
Under stringent regulations set out by the World Health Organisation (WHO), travellers to countries affected by yellow fever are required to carry an international certificate of vaccination as proof of vaccination against the yellow fever virus.
Dears Pharmacy & Travel Clinic is an official designated yellow fever centre. We are able to administer the yellow fever vaccination and will advise on the best course of action to keep you safe while travelling.
Select your preferred pharmacy to visit their page and enquire about this service or just pop in when it suits you.