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Malaria Tablets

U.K
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28 posts
2 reviews
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Malaria Tablets

Hi,

My family & I leave for the DR next Monday 28th November.

We have the tablets sitting on our kitchen work top & still don`t know whether to take them.

I have read that 1 million tourists visit the DR over the winter period so it is a very low risk area, if you think only a few contract Malaria.

I have been on The Hospital Of Tropical Diseases London website and have ordered Ultrathon repellent & Jungle Formula extra strength Liquid repellent (lasts upto 10hrs.The Armed Forces use these.

I will be using plug in`s & spraying the room.

I think the tablets will stay put as I still cannot make up my mind.

Does anybody know if there has been any change regarding Malaria in the DR?

Milton Keynes...
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519 posts
83 reviews
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41. Re: Malaria Tablets

Weatherdood

Just asked our chief Pharmacist and he says there shouldn't be a problem with alcohol whilst taking your antimalarial medication. Just be sensible blah blah blah!!!!!

Happy holidays.

Ottawa Canada
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13 posts
1 review
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42. Re: Malaria Tablets

Thanks for the update Pinkparrot - very helpful. Very scary about the guy almost losing his leg. I just read an article suggesting the flu shot is a very bad idea. It's hard to know what to believe. I forget now, was it Punta Cana you visited? We have decided to go to Puerta Plata in March. Beaches are not as nice, but the tennis courts are the best I've ever seen, and there does not appear to be a malaria risk there at this time. We will bring Deet as well and not take the pills, unless the status of malaria in Puerta Plata changes before March. Glad you had a good trip, and glad you are well. Cheers, Dave in Ottawa

Wisconsin
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1,253 posts
8 reviews
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43. Re: Malaria Tablets

The antimalarial drugs can be hard on the liver and are not recommended for people who have liver disease and who plan on drinking alot the day the take them. This was told to us by the travel advisor for our major medical center here in Wisconsin. We still have two bottles sitting there, we opted not to take them. It is a personal choice. Where we were at Secrets, we literally did not see one mosquito until the airport in Punta Cana on our way home. Take your bug spray in your carryon - they were ferocious there!

Ontario,Canada
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27 posts
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44. Re: Malaria Tablets

My husband and I are going to Punta Cana and we are taking the malaria tablets. If there are manyconcerns and issues that everyone should be taking them than why doesn't the CDC make it manditory that everyone has to take them to enter the country than there would be no worries and we could be helping them by not spreading the malaria. I probably know the answer to that myself it's TOURISM because people wouldn't go but what is more important here?????? Just my opinion!

Ontario,Canada
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27 posts
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45. Re: Malaria Tablets

My husband and I are going to Punta Cana and we are taking the malaria tablets. If there are manyconcerns and issues that everyone should be taking them than why doesn't the CDC make it manditory that everyone has to take them to enter the country than there would be no worries and we could be helping them by not spreading the malaria. I probably know the answer to that myself it's TOURISM because people wouldn't go but what is more important here?????? Just my opinion!

NJ
8 posts
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46. Re: Malaria Tablets

Here's my dive into the abyss: I've been struggling with taking the drugs or not...and I leave tomorrow with my family. A couple of factors pushed me toward taking the meds. First, the two Sept. 2005 reported cases were both from bavaro beach resorts (where I'm staying). Second, mossie problems proliferate during periods of rain (can anyone say Hurrican Epsilon?). Third, transmission occurs from person to person thru mossies (ie- malaria-host hotel worker gets bitten and then you get bitten by the same mossie). Fourth, my personal research on the web lead me toward a drug called Malarone that is taken daily starting the day before the trip, thru the trip and a week afterward. The side effects are lower than chloroquine (actually comparable to placebo). Malarone is the newer drug and just hasn't gained wide acceptance yet in the US (old-boy doctor groups). Fifth, friends took it and had no problem. Sixth, CDC doesn't recommend for the heck of it. Seventh, took it last night and so far, so good. I may stop mid-trip, but I'm a go for now. Now lets talk about 50% deet on my kids!

calgary
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61 posts
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47. Re: Malaria Tablets

The 2 cases the CDC has reported were in Aug and Sept. In 2004 the last case was in January and the alert was lifted by early spring. Does anyone know what the CDC uses as a time measurement (no new cases) to lift an alert? I don’t go until February so with the rainy season almost over I’m hoping there aren’t any new cases. That said, if no new cases are reported I’m not taking meds whether the alert is still on or not.

Wisconsin
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1,253 posts
8 reviews
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48. Re: Malaria Tablets

Just a ? If you start taking the meds, why would you stop mid trip? They are not effective AT ALL then! They need to be taken consecutively for the prescribed amount of time.

Ottawa Canada
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13 posts
1 review
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49. Re: Malaria Tablets

EMTLADY, I think the thinking on this is - if you go and never see a mosquito and are quite sure you have not been bitten, and you have issues with taking the drug, then you might feel that you can stop taking it at some point. However it's probably not smart as there is no way to know for sure if you have been bitten. I, for example usually do not have a reaction on my skin when bitten, so if I am bitten in my sleep I might never know. So I agree with you, if you think the meds are necessary, take them for the entire time recommended.

Las Vegas...
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665 posts
8 reviews
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50. Re: Malaria Tablets

We returned from La Romana on Sunday. Both my husband and I took the chloroquine on the advise of our family doctor, even though we were not staying in the area where the cases have been reported. Our doctor takes chloroquine when he travels to the DR, as it can take up to a year for the disease to manifest.

We have been taking for 4 weeks and have felt no side effects what so ever. We have 4 weeks to go. I was told that it's ok to drink while on the medication, as long as you don't take it with an alcoholic beverage. We drank while on vacation and no side effects from the medication and alcohol.

As far as not seeing any mosquitos...the ones that carry the malaria parasite are active between dusk and dawn. Kinda hard to see them at night.

We used mosquito coils in our room at night (which have worked great for us in other tropical destinations). Additionally I used a bug repellant faithfully at night (23% DEET was the highest concentration I could find and it had a burning sensation when it touched my skin). Despite this, I was biten repeatedly at night. Oddly enough the bites didn't itch and I didn't notice them until I was either putting on sunscreen or in the shower. My husband however did not use the repllent and never had one bite.

As one poster said using the chloroquine is like using a seatbelt. It's an individual choice. But I'm one of those people who faithfully uses a seatbelt.

Also a friend of mine contracted malaria many years ago while working as a translator in Haiti (ok, I know Haiti is not the DR). She became ill about three months after she returned to the US. It was awful watching her.