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Malaria

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Stephens.L
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Re: Malaria

Unread post by Stephens.L » Wed Jul 10, 2013 11:14 am

The choice of malaria prophylaxis needs to be made in consultation with your doctor. The different drugs have different side effects, and a full history and examination will need to be performed to determine the drug that is best suited to the patient. Drugs that are effectively used as prophylaxis in the Kruger Park are Doxycycline, Mefloquine and Atovaquone-Proguanil.

The medical practitioners in the park are Dr Gary Peiser and Dr Ninette Muller who are based at Skukuza. The number for their surgery is 013 735 5638. You can also visit their website on http://www.krugerdoctors.co.za/.
Regards

Stephens Ledwaba
Communications and Marketing Department
Kruger National Park
+27 (0)13 735 4116
stephens.ledwaba@sanparks.org

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onewithnature
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Re: Malaria around Shingwedzi and further north.

Unread post by onewithnature » Sun Jul 14, 2013 1:04 am

In this so-called information age, it is amazing how few people are actually informed. :hmz: (Then again, they also say that we live in a paperless society, but I'm sure the trees would not agree. :whistle: ) This applies to subjects accross the board, and malaria is certainly no exception. I think the problem is that there is just too much information out there and, sometimes, there are sites and people which offer substandard, and maybe even downright incorrect, information. The result is a melee of confusion which can lead to even educated, sensible people doing the wrong things. The basics of malaria prophylaxis are non-drug measures all year round in all malarial areas, with the recommended addition of chemoprophylaxis (antimalarial medications) in all high-risk areas (assuming, of course, that the traveller is medically able to use such medication or travel to a malarial area). The attribution of risk in any area can be deduced from competent malaria-risk-areas maps, and hence the traveller to such areas can make informed decisions in association with a competent health professional based on the risk in that area at that time of year and the susceptibility of the person to contracting malaria (which also includes a personal medical history and risk-factors assessment). Like Weskusklong's excellent metaphor, malaria prophylaxis can be likened to the necessary, but generally restrictive and/or uncomfortable, use of a seatbelt to minimise risk of death when involved in a close-encounter with it. However, that prevention should never be ignored, for it only takes one accident or one mosquito. Ndloti's understanding that the density of human population is related to malaria risk in malarial areas is correct, to a point: the number of people bitten by malaria-carrying mosquitoes increases the number of human vectors that can transmit the disease. However, malaria is a multifactorial disease and meteorological and other factors also affect the prevalence of mosquitoes at any given time. Perhaps then, to be too specific and detailed in predicting malaria risk over short time periods might entertain similar pitfalls of inaccuracy inherent in trying to be too specific with, for example, weather predictions - the number and variation of fluctuating factors (both malarial and human) is too complicated to generate an accurate model, and hence there is most probably value in maintaining conservative and acceptable guidelines, as is generally done by competent advisers. People will always have different attitudes to risk - some are sensible and some are maverick (perhaps this reflects the diversity of the human condition) - but it is essential that people make their decisions consciously knowing what the risks are, and then remain vigilant for any signs of malaria so that, if necessary, treatment can begin timeously. It must never be forgotten that malaria is a preventable disease and that there is no excuse for neglect.

Disclaimer: My recommendations here - though based on some experience and some drug knowledge - are not absolute, and further consultation with suitable health-care professionals is suggested before a final decision is taken on whether to enter a malarial area, what prophylaxis to use, and any general factors and limitations that need to be taken into account. Furthermore, I only advise based on what information is given by the person(s) entering the malarial area, but I have no control on the information given to me, and so such information could possibly be incomplete or misleading.
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Re: Malaria

Unread post by JDW » Sun Jul 14, 2013 12:56 pm

The message is very simple -
GO AND SEE YOUR DOCTOR OR OTHER APPROPRIATE HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONAL WHILE INITIALLY PLANNING YOUR TRIP.
ACT ON THAT ADVICE.
Would you take advice on your financial dealings from a bus driver NO!!
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Re: Malaria

Unread post by onewithnature » Mon Jul 15, 2013 3:15 am

Thanks for the reinforcement, JDW. :thumbs_up: (Actually, I once heard of a bus driver who eventually took over the bus company; however, I guess that doesn't happen too often, eh. :wink: :lol: )
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Re: Malaria

Unread post by missings.a.! » Mon Jul 15, 2013 9:45 am

OWN is able to advise on malaria and his patience in continually responding to people's queries is infinite.

For my two pennyworth as someone who is NOT a medical professional, but has visited the Kruger and surrounding areas on a number of occasions, I would take advice on preventing being bitten, as many forumites have spent years developing methods of keeping their families and themselves bite free.

However! Over and over, OWN stresses to visit your doctor and discuss malaria with him, because he knows your family's medical history and any allergies and can prescribe the correct antimalarial medication.

Personally, I think it is madness to take risks in a High Risk area and especially to take risks with children, who have no say in their own safety.

I have been bitten by mosquitos on my nose, eyelids and goodness knows where. It is practically impossible to guarantee you will not be bitten, especially when you taking a bath or shower. Very few of us are experienced enough to react immediately at the sign of malaria. Look at Bruce Bryden and what a loss there to his family and the rest of the world.

I read all the time here of Brits who go to African countries and develop malaria very rapidly and die.

so I will do a test run of any medication my doctor advises.

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Re: Malaria

Unread post by onewithnature » Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:48 am

Thank you Missings; you are very kind. :thumbs_up: But you are also knowledgeable and sensible, and articulate your thoughts diplomatically and expertly. I always appreciate your posts. :clap: :clap: :clap:

The problem I have noticed is not that there is insufficient information, but that people - especially many who have been visiting malarial areas for years - become complacent. Southern African malarial areas, relative to the tropical areas of the world, are mostly lowish risk; so people that have been entering and exiting them over a lifetime have a good chance of never having contracted malaria. Which makes so many of them think that malaria is overexaggerated in these areas. An officially-described lower-risk malarial area means that fewer cases of malaria are known. However, such numbers are invariably underexaggerated because many of the cases of malaria contracted there are never reported back to the source. It is usually only when high profile people, like Bruce Bryden, tragically succumb to the disease that the general public sit up and take notice again. I think this psychological malaise is somehow integral to the human condition; hence I find myself having to continually remind people of the risks. Some will never listen, but the majority usually do heed advice and take suitable precautions. Though it sounds most hackneyed, it takes but one infected mosquito to pass on the disease, and if the recipient or his or her family is not sufficiently vigilant, a tragedy is in the making. I cannot overemphasise that, during high-risk malarial times, it is essential to, if possible, take both suitable antimalarial drugs and supplement with non-drug measures. In low-risk times, sufficient and suitable non-drug measures are advised as enough for healthy individuals. However, the special groups - pregnant women, young children, immunocompromised individuals, and the like - need specialised advice as their presence in a malarial area is mostly fraught with increased danger.
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Many thanks to all-effective product for tick-mosquito

Unread post by hemant » Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:54 pm

Thanks to reading this forum about Wilderness Trail, my wife and I ventured to go on four back to back Wilderness Trails during February-March of 2013, our third visit to KNP. We would have never considered such a venture without great information from all of you. We just want to say many thanks. Our first trail was Bushman (just two of us) followed by Metsi-Metsi, Sweni, and Napi. What a great experience. We also enjoyed our stay several rest camps, including Lower Sabie, Satara, Berg-en-dal, and Pretoriuskop. Prior to visiting KNP, we spent three days at Nselweni Bush Lodge at Imfolozi-Mpila - which we highly recommend.

We would be more than happy to assist anyone based on our experience.

Also, we like to point out a great product available in the US - not sure its availability in other countries - we did not see this product available in South Africa - our contribution to this forum. It is chemically called Permethrine - apporved by the US EPA for use in human and animals for killing ticks and mosquitoes - it is not a repellent. It is available on Amazon.Com It is truly an effective product - one would wet the clothes with 0.5% solution - which is good for 10 washes. Believe me any tick or mosquitoes touches treated clothes would be dead in seconds. We did provide this to few Wilderness Trail Rangers - they were all amazed how effective this product is. This product is available at 0.5% solution for immediate use or 36% solution for use in farm - which is to be diluted with water before use. 36% solution is very inexpensive and can make enough product to last life time. This is not effective on human skin as in disintegrates quickly to harmless components - may be the major reason why EPA has approved it for human use. We used it throughout our trip to KNP and did not experience any tick or mosquito problems.

Due to this unique experience, we will be going on to four more back to back Wilderness Trails this November-December period - starting with Wolhuter and followed by Sweni, Olifants, and Napi. We hope to do Nyaland some day - when it is fully functional.

Again, many thanks to all participants on this great forum - without which we would have missed this great experience in our life.

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Re: Many thanks to all-effective product for tick-mosquito

Unread post by Grantmissy » Mon Sep 23, 2013 7:50 am

hemant I guess similar products are available in the outdoor and Parks shops in SA, under a different name perhaps.

hemant wrote:we will be going on to four more back to back Wilderness Trails this November-December period - starting with Wolhuter and followed by Sweni, Olifants, and Napi


Enjoy your upcoming wilderness trails :thumbs_up:
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Re: Many thanks to all-effective product for tick-mosquito

Unread post by hemant » Mon Sep 23, 2013 11:16 pm

When we were in South Africa this past February - March, we did not find any permethrine based product in stores we checked - including stores at several Kruger Rest Camps. Since we had extra concentrated product, we offered to rangers at three Wilderness Trails and they were quite impressed as how effective this product is. They also checked where they purchase their mosquito repellents but could not find any permethrine based product. They did ask us if we can ship this item from the US - unfortunately this being insecticide, we are unable to as none of the shipping carriers would ship it for us. We are very surprised that this is not widely available and widely used in place like South Africa - particularly against tick.

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Malaria in November

Unread post by NJVermaak » Fri Sep 27, 2013 10:59 am

So we finally managed to get to take some time of work and a booking at Tamboti. :dance:

The only thing that is worrying me is that SO is pregnant and I don't want to take any risks for her and the baby while we visit Tamboti, is November a high risk time, I've done some research and apparently November is not a high risk time. (http://www.krugerpark.com/malaria.htm and http://www.sanparks.co.za/parks/kruger/ ... alaria.php).

We will talk to the GP before we decide to go, are there any anti malaria drugs that are safe for use during pregnancy? SO will also be wearing protective clothing and repellents will be used.

Any advice would be appreciated... thanks.
NJ Vermaak
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Re: Malaria in November

Unread post by Crested Val » Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:45 am

This is always a difficult one. :hmz:

When I read May-November, to me that means "to, but not including November", so I would certainly have reservations if you are going in November with a pregnant wife.

Also with the odd climate changes world wide these days, the SA weather is not so predicable as it used to be.

Last year we were in Phalaborwa in November and had very hot weather quite a lot of the time.

Also several members have reported increased numbers of mozzies recently, thought that was around the Shingwedzi area.

I would suggest that you talk to your GP sooner rather than later.

Oh dear that all sounds so negative, and maybe I'm being over cautious, but that is how I see it.

I'm sure others here will disagree with me, and at the end of the day, the decision must be yours and your wife's.

Good luck deciding...........and if you do go, hope you have a wonderful trip. :thumbs_up:

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Re: Malaria

Unread post by Elsa » Fri Sep 27, 2013 1:05 pm

For myself I don't think one can be cautious enough when one is thinking Malaria!

NJVermaak also another good Topic which gives very precise info which you might not have noticed

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Have you or anyone you know contracted malaria in KNP?

Unread post by SAF » Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:28 pm

I just thought this is an interesting topic.We love KNP and we usually end up going throughout the year.the only thing that always puts doubts in our mind is the malaria issue.personally I have never heard from anyone I know that has contracted malaria in KNP.i know it is a malaria risk area but I want to find out how serious it is.
I heard Sanparks spray DDT to help prevent malaria don't know how true it is.I know it takes 1 mosquito to pass it on but just thought it is interesting to know.
Have you or anyone you know contracted malaria in KNP?
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Re: Have you or anyone you know contracted malaria in KNP?

Unread post by Crested Val » Sun Nov 03, 2013 6:52 pm

Well I'll start the ball rolling with a "NO". I personally have not heard of anyone who has contracted malaria while staying in Kruger, but many people take anti malaria precautions, to make sure that they don't!! :thumbs_up:

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Re: Have you or anyone you know contracted malaria in KNP?

Unread post by Carol g » Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:14 pm

We have been going to Kruger for over 30 years, luckily have not contracted malaria, I also have never heard of anyone who has :dance: :dance:
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