6 May 2021
12 Nov 2021
Mosquito Transmitted Diseases
The Aedes and Anopheles mosquitos are the species that spread the most infectious diseases in Brazil.
Below you will find a description of each of the more common illnesses. Remember, these diseases and their carriers are mainly found on the outskirts of big towns, and in less sanitary areas. Dense living quarters in some areas make it easy for the mosquitoes to reproduce, especially near stagnant waters.
However, it is always possible to be bitten elsewhere by a carrier insect, which is why prevention is essential and the most effective way to avoid infection.
For Zika and Dengue, getting a vaccine is not possible, make sure to take all precautions to avoid mosquitos. There are vaccines available for other illnesses.
Yellow Fever – Vaccination Available
One of the most common and important vaccines for Brazil is yellow fever. Like many infectious diseases in Brazil, yellow fever comes from the tropical rainforests where mosquitoes transmit it between monkeys. Humans usually contract the disease when an infected mosquito bites them. Yellow fever is often confused with a common flu or fever, but it is much more dangerous and in serious cases can cause organ failure. It is imperative that you speak to a medical professional to check you have had your vaccination before coming to Brazil.
For yellow fever, you simply need to get your vaccination 10 days before entering an infected zone. This vaccination is mandatory to visit certain parts of the Amazon. A vaccination card is required for all travelers coming from a South American or African country infected by yellow fever upon entry. The seasonal period for yellow fever in Brazil is December until May.
Dengue Fever – Prevention
There is no specific treatment for this disease and and doctors tend to treat the symptoms: fever, red blotches and fatigue for 2 to 3 weeks. Nonetheless, it is one of the most feared infectious diseases in Brazil and if left untreated, dengue can develop into a more serious condition with higher risks to the patient´s health, known as severe dengue.
Zika Virus – Prevention
The Zika virus was originally found in the Ugandan monkeys of the Zika forest and is said to have been brought to Brazil with either the 2014 World Cup or the 2014 World Sprint Championship canoe race
The peculiar and dangerous thing about this infectious disease in Brazil and in the rest of the world is that once infected, most people do not develop symptoms. The reason the Zika virus was such an alarming and horrible worldwide concern is the effects it has when a pregnant mother is infected. If infected during this critical period, the foetus can develop microcephaly and other serious health issues. Furthermore, the pregnancy itself is at high risk of serious complications such as preterm or even stillbirth.
There is no treatment available for the Zika virus or the complications it can cause during pregnancy.
The most effective prevention of Zika virus is to avoid being bitten by infected mosquitos. Also, Zika virus can be transmitted during sexual intercourse.