Chickenpox is a highly-contagious viral infection, affecting young children, adults, and, of course, those who have not been immunized. Young children are generally mildly affected, however, Chickenpox can be more severe in adults, and those with weakened immune systems.
The virus is easily transmitted from an infected person to a person who has never had the virus or has not been vaccinated. It is caused by a Herpes virus known as Varicella-Zoster, and the best way to prevent it is to get the Chicken Pox vaccine.
A red, very itchy rash develops, usually beginning on the face and trunk, and later spreading to other areas of the body, in particular, the neck, face, and limbs. As the virus progresses, itchy red bumps form into blisters, filled with fluid, which later drain and scab over. The infected person will also develop a fever and a general feeling of tiredness. The virus can be transmitted by contact with the oozing blisters, clothing, and bedding of an infected person, or by contact with airborne droplets from an infected person.
At the present time, Chickenpox affects countries across the globe, and unless you have received the Chickenpox vaccine, or are immune from having already had the disease, you will be at risk for contracting the virus.
Your vaccination against Chickenpox will be administered in two doses, and we recommend that your first jab be scheduled for no less than 6 weeks prior to your departure date, to allow a reasonable period for the vaccine to take effect. It is important to note that you will not be able to be vaccinated if you are pregnant or immuno-compromised.
In most cases, (as high as 98%), the Chickenpox vaccination will be effective for life. Possible exceptions are where a person contracts an illness which compromises their immune system.
There are rare cases where a person who has been vaccinated might still contract the disease, however, the symptoms of the virus will be much milder and cause less discomfort, with little or no fever.
It is important to note that if you have had Chickenpox, you are almost assured of immunity for life, although the virus remains dormant in the body and could emerge later in life as shingles.
Despite the fact that side effects associated with the vaccination against Chickenpox (Varicella) are rare, some patients experience a mild rash, redness, or swelling around the site of the injection. Other possible, though rare, side effects are mild fever or a rash accompanied by several small bumps. Should such a rash occur, you could possibly spread the disease to others.
While vaccination remains the single most effective weapon against catching Chickenpox, it is important to be familiar with the ways in which the virus is spread from one person to another, and to remember that the virus can be spread before symptoms become visible.
Our London Travel Clinics
All 3 of our centrally located travel clinics are convenient for people living and working in London. Liverpool Street, London Bridge and High St Kensington. We are open early morning, lunchtime, evening and weekends and provide all of the vaccinations and medications that you need.