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  • "Should I take anti-malaria pills?"

Johnny Jet

Manhattan Beach

Should I take anti-malaria pills?

I keep hearing mixed results.

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  • Susan P.

    Susan P.

    Hi - Malaria is not to be trifled with. I would take the pills. I haven't been to Kenya but I have been to other countries where I've needed to take it. I know that it affects people differently but I've never had a problem with it. · (0 likelikes)

 

					
					
					
				

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  • Soraya Darabi

    top answer by

    Yes. My sister had Malaria from a week of not taking Malaron in Kenya. I strongly suggest you do.

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    • Annemarie D.

      Annemarie D.

      I'd second this. I took the mefloquine on a trip to Uganda and Rwanda and had night terrors and stomach pains, presumably in association with the medication-- but that was mild compared to a fellow traveler who caught malaria on the same trip. · (2 likelikes)

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  • Cassandra Turner

    answered by

    One thing no one has mentioned is that if you do get malari, you can have relapses of it forever. I first had it in Diani Beach, Kenya in 1992 and have periodic bouts even five years or so. Take the medication, but on a full stomach.

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  • Sunil Gupta

    answered by

    I haven't been to Kenya or any other place where I would be at risk for it, but after seeing one of my friends' mother get a bout of malaria a few months ago, I would take the pills. Last I heard not too long ago, she's still hospitalized. Malaria is no joke, so if I'm going to a place where I'd be at more risk for it, I'd definitely do all that I can to prevent it.

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  • Denise Diamond

    answered by

    Assuming you won't just be in Nairobi - then yes i would take it! I lived in Tanzaniarecently, which is similar to Kenya, and knew several people who got it. You should go see your doctor to get the best medication for you.

    Once you're there, use repellant. But if you take medication, I don't think you necessarily need to use repellent with Deet. I mainly used it in the evenings when the mosquitoes were worse unless I was doing a big outdoor activity. And unless where you're staying is complexly closed off, like in an upscale hotel room, you should sleep with the net on your bed.

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  • Joanna Rigby-Jones

    answered by

    Your physician will always be best suited to answer this question, but I would always recommend taking anti-malarial tablets if you're traveling to an affected region. I take Malarone, and while it's more expensive than some of the other options, it's often considered the most effective and also has the fewest side effects. I visit Tanzaniaand Kenyaquite frequently and have always taken Malarone and been fortunate to never have any issues.

    Medication will always affect people in different ways, so it's important to speak with your physician and consider your different options. With that said, Malaria is a nasty disease and not something you would want to risk contracting so my advice would be to take them!

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  • Jonathan Lee

    answered by

    It depends on where in Kenya you are visiting. It's not required in the capital of Nairobi due to its elevation and geographic location but yes for everywhere else in Kenya.

    Additional information from the CDC here.

    I spent 6 months working in Kenya primarily in the capital of Nairobi. When I visited my local travel clinic I was advise that for Nairobi I didn't have to worry about Malaria.

    When I traveled outside of Nairobi I took Malerone which I was told had the least amount of side effects.

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  • Jennifer Tran

    answered by

    Your miles may vary.

    I was just in Tanzania for 1.5 months Oct - Nov 2013. I'm pretty healthy and athletic, but I got bitten by mosquitoes like crazy...my feet and hands were covered in bites. This was when I was in the city and low altitude land. I didn't encounter any problems during Kilimanjaro, or really even the safari portion of my trip. One actually bit me in the palm...perhaps it couldn't find an unbitten exposed spot elsewhere. I soon discovered it was because there was a hole in my mosquito net. Nighttime was when the majority of those bugs would get me.

    If I didn't take malaria medicine, I have a fair guess that contracting malaria would definitely have been possible for me. The cure there is $6 USD apparently, and if you're in some kind of city it's likely easy to acquire. You sometimes don't see the symptoms of malaria until a week or so later.

    Lots of ex-pats stop taking the pills. I say if you're there for 2 months or less, bring the medicine. If you're fairly non-reactive to most medicines (I don't have any allergic medicine reactions), you'll likely be okay with the pills. I did not have any symptoms after I stopped taking them.

    Remember that the anti-malaria is only PREVENTATIVE. So if you decide to take them, don't skip on a day.


    Let me know if you have any other questions!

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  • Annemarie Dooling

    answered by

    I had a really bad personal experience with Doxycycline in Rwanda that included night terrors, insomnia and nausea, so I'd love to agree with Lauren, and tell you that you don't need them. However, the CDC recommends that visitors traveling to low-altitude areas or areas where a malaria outbreak has been previously noted, should be on medication when they arrive. (More on that here: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/traveler/none/kenya).

    I definitely came in contact with Americas on long term stays in Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda who declined to take the pills, and most natives, from my experience, don't take them, but if your body isn't used to the climate or the wildlife of these areas, you're risking a lot for the sake of not taking a little pill.

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  • Darren Weir

    answered by

    Given the choice between malaria and Malarone... take the pills !

    I took them a few years ago when I was in Tanzania.

    There are a few side effects but they are not severe. Still it's a good idea to start taking them 4 or. 5 days before you leave to build up the levels in your body but also to see how well you tolerate it BEFORE you go. If you have any serious side effects you have easy access to your health care provider.

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  • Milcah Kipruto

    answered by

    Yes, especially in a rainy season.

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  • Robert Nganga

    answered by

    Yes you should. Some areas are malaria free but if you are moving around the country it's a good idea to

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  • chethana anumolu

    answered by

    Hey! I think you should keep them on the safe side. I went to Tanzania and Zanzibar didnt need to use them but i kept them with me. A traveler borrowed them off me because he was told it was not required and got malaria. No harm in being prepared.

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  • linda matama

    answered by

    Yes you should. You will hear all sorts of answers but my take is, you have nothing to loose by taking it. Better safe than sorry.

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  • Mutasa Brush

    answered by

    like many countries in Africa ,while travelling its highly advisable to carry anti-malaria pills because of the warm climate

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  • Yodit Tsegaye

    answered by

    Yes, good precaution

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  • Lauren Alexa

    answered by

    I wouldn't recommend taking them. I was in Kenya and Tanzania for two weeks this summer and was taking anti-malaria pills. When I got back home and stopped taking them, the effects were pretty bad. I know a lady that's lived in Kenya for 20 years now, and she's never taken them and has only had malaria three times in that span of time. Based on that, I'd say the chances of actually getting malaria are slim. Also, based on my experience, my first piece of advice to anyone going to Kenya would be to not go on the pills. I definitely wouldn't take them again myself! Hope this helps! Have a good trip!

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    • Christie B.

      Christie B.

      Lauren - what were the side effects after you stopped taking them and what was the drug? · (0 likelikes)

    • Lauren A.

      Lauren A.

      Christie - I was on Atovaquone Proguanil. When I stopped taking it I got suuuuper bad acne (never had an issue with acne in my life) and I had to go on medication for it - I still have scarring from it a year later. Maybe if you get a different brand you'll be ok! I did some research after getting those side effects and I guess some ingredients used in anti-malaria pills are the same as acne treating pills - make sure whatever you get isn't one of those. :) · (1 likelikes)

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