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FAQ about Dukoral, a vaccine that offers protection against cholera and travellers' diarrhea caused by ETEC. Find information on dosage, efficacy & side effects.
DUKORAL® is not recommended for most travellers. However, individuals at high risk of health complications or serious inconvenience from travellers' diarrhea may benefit from the vaccine. These include:
- People for whom a brief illness cannot be tolerated, such as elite athletes, business or political travellers who need to maintain optimal performance.
- Individuals with increased susceptibility to travellers' diarrhea, like those with achlorhydria (reduced stomach acid), gastrectomy (stomach removal), a history of repeated severe travellers' diarrhea, or young children over 2 years of age.
- People who are immunosuppressed due to HIV infection with a low CD4 count or other immunodeficiency states.
- Those with chronic illnesses, such as chronic renal failure, congestive heart failure, insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, or inflammatory bowel disease, for whom there is an increased risk of serious consequences from travellers' diarrhea.
Preventing cholera and travellers' diarrhea mainly involves making careful food and water choices and maintaining good hygiene practices, rather than relying on immunization. A travel-related risk assessment can help determine which travellers might benefit from vaccination. Furthermore, the vaccine is not advised for children under 2 years since its effectiveness hasn't been evaluated in this age group.
- Offering limited protection (around 6%) against travellers' diarrhea.
- Most travellers' diarrhea episodes being typically mild and self-resolving.
- The availability of alternative treatments such as oral rehydration, dietary management, anti-motility agents, and antibiotics if prevention is unsuccessful.
- The potential risk of vaccinated travellers feeling overly confident and not adhering strictly to food and water safety measures.
The number of doses depends on the person's age and the reason for vaccination. Generally, children between 2 and less than 6 years of age need 3 doses, while those aged 6 years and older need 2 doses. For travellers' diarrhea, 2 doses are needed for people aged 2 years and older. Booster doses may be required depending on the ongoing risk assessment.
DUKORAL® and oral typhoid vaccine capsules should be taken at least 8 hours apart. There is no known interaction between DUKORAL® and other common travel vaccines, such as hepatitis A, hepatitis B, meningococcal, and yellow fever vaccines, although data are limited.xp
DUKORAL® should not be given to people with a history of severe allergic reactions after previous administration of the vaccine or those allergic to any component of the vaccine. It should be postponed in people with moderate or severe acute illness or stomach problems.
The overall protection provided by DUKORAL® against travellers' diarrhea is estimated to be around 6%. It specifically protects against one type of cholera bacteria but not others. Most episodes of travellers' diarrhea are mild and self-limited, and other prevention measures, such as careful food and water selection, are important as well.