Infectious Disease Book


Travel Preparation

Aka: Travel Preparation, Pretravel Consultation, Travel Medicine, Traveler's Health, Traveling with Medications
  1. See Also
    1. Travel Resources
    2. Air Travel Restriction
    3. Travel Immunization
    4. See International Medical Concerns
  2. Precautions
    1. Review specific risks and preparation (e.g. Immunizations) at least 6 weeks before travel
      1. See International Medical Concerns
      2. See Travel Immunization
      3. See Waterborne Illness Prevention
      4. See Foodborne Illness Prevention
      5. See Prevention of Vector-borne Infection
      6. See Malaria Prophylaxis
    2. Avoid excessive risks associated with death
      1. Motor Vehicle Accidents (account for >18% of all deaths in travelers)
        1. Use Seat Belts and Car Seats
        2. Wear Bicycle helmets
        3. Avoid night driving
        4. Avoid riding in open back of pick-up truck (or open bus top)
        5. Avoid motorcycles and mopeds
      2. Drowning
      3. Violence
    3. Avoid other risks
      1. Tattoos or piercing (risk of HIV, Hepatitis C)
      2. Avoid filling medications in low-income nations (risk of adulterated medications)
    4. Protect yourself
      1. See Sun Exposure
      2. See High Altitude Sickness
      3. See DVT Prevention in Travelers
      4. Practice safe sex (Condoms and Contraception)
      5. Consider travel insurance with emergency medical evacuation coverage
        1. Especially for high risk activities (e.g. mountain climbing)
    5. Comorbid Conditions
      1. See Air Travel Restriction
      2. Carry documentation of medical history
        1. Active medical conditions
        2. Medication allergies
    6. Medications
      1. Carry prescribed medications in their original containers when possible
        1. Also bring a list of the medications with both trade and generic names, along with indications
        2. Ideally, have list addended with names in destination language
      2. Bring enough medication supply to cover for extra emergency days of travel (in carry-on luggage)
        1. If medication must be purchased in destination country, review with pharmacist to verify equivalence
      3. Declare potentially suspect medications
        1. Liquid medications >3.4 ounces
        2. Syringes
      4. Inquire about controlled substances and banned substances in destination country prior to travel
        1. Adderall is banned in Japan
        2. Pseudophedrine is banned in Mexico
      5. References
        1. (2022) Presc Lett 29(5): 28
  3. Risk factors: Travel related illness
    1. Backpacking trek or adventure travel
    2. Age over 65 years
    3. Immunocompromised state
    4. U.S. Immigrant returning to country of origin
    5. Long-term travel
    6. Pregnancy
    7. Uncontrolled comorbidity
      1. Congestive Heart Failure
      2. Hypertension
      3. Seizure Disorder
      4. Diabetes Mellitus
      5. Mental illness
      6. Coronary Artery Disease (Recent Myocardial Infarction or CABG)
        1. See Contraindications to Air Travel
  4. Contraindications: Travel Restrictions
    1. See Contraindications to Air Travel
  5. Management: Emergency care while traveling
    1. See First Aid Kit
    2. See Traveler's Diarrhea Prophylaxis
    3. See Travel Resources
  6. Management: Returning Travelers
    1. See Fever in the Returning Traveler
    2. See GI Conditions in Febrile Returning Traveler
    3. See Lymphadenopathy in the Febrile Returning Traveler
  7. Prevention
    1. See Travel Immunization
    2. See Waterborne Illness Prevention
    3. See Foodborne Illness Prevention
    4. See Prevention of Vector-borne Infection
    5. See Malaria Prophylaxis
    6. See Sleep Disturbance in Travel
    7. See High Altitude Sickness
    8. See Sun Exposure
    9. See DVT Prevention in Travelers
    10. See Motion Sickness
  8. Resources
    1. See Travel Resources
    2. CDC Travel
  9. References
    1. Bazemore (2009) Am Fam Physician 80(6): 583-90 [PubMed]
    2. Powell-Dunford (2021) Am Fam Physician 104(4): 403-10 [PubMed]
    3. Sanford (2016) Am Fam Physician 94(8): 620-7 [PubMed]

travel (C0040802)

Definition (MSH) Aspects of health and disease related to travel.
Definition (NCI) The act of going from one place to another.
Definition (CSP) to go on a trip or tour; also used to cover the expenses of traveling, such as airfare, hotel, rental car, etc.
Concepts Daily or Recreational Activity (T056)
MSH D014195
SnomedCT 129018004, 420008001
English Travel, Travels, traveling, Traveling, Traveling (function), Traveling (observable entity), Traveling, function (observable entity), travel, Travel (event)
Spanish viaje (evento), viaje, viajar (entidad observable), viajar (función), viajar, Viaje
Swedish Resor
Czech cestování, turistika
Finnish Matkailu
Polish Turystyka, Podróże
Norwegian Not Translated[Travel]
French Voyage
German Reisen
Italian Viaggiare
Dutch Reizen
Portuguese Viagem
Derived from the NIH UMLS (Unified Medical Language System)

Traveler's Health (C1456578)

Definition (MEDLINEPLUS)

Traveling can increase your chances of getting sick. A long flight can increase your risk for deep vein thrombosis. Once you arrive, it takes time to adjust to the water, food, and air in another place. Water in developing countries can contain viruses, bacteria, and parasites that cause stomach upset and diarrhea. Be safe by using only bottled or purified water for drinking, making ice cubes, and brushing your teeth. If you use tap water, boil it or use iodine tablets. Food poisoning can also be a risk. Eat only food that is fully cooked and served hot. Avoid unwashed or unpeeled raw fruits and vegetables.

If you are traveling out of the country, you might also need vaccinations or medicines to prevent specific illnesses. Which ones you need will depend on what part of the world you're visiting, the time of year, your age, overall health status, and previous immunizations. See your doctor 4 to 6 weeks before your trip. Most vaccines take time to become effective.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Concepts Group Attribute (T102)
English Traveler's Health
Derived from the NIH UMLS (Unified Medical Language System)

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