Japanese Encephalitis (JE)
Japanese encephalitis (JE) is a disease of the cerebrum brought about by the Japanese encephalitis infection (JEV). While most diseases bring about practically no side effects, intermittent irritation of the mind happens. In these cases, side effects may incorporate migraine, regurgitating, fever, disarray and seizures. It is an acute brain inflammation caused by the Japanese Encephalitis (JE) virus, spreading with mosquito bites, which can result in brain damage and death.
How is it transmitted Japanese Encephalitis?
The virus is transmitted from Culex-type mosquitoes. This virus; It infects pigs, various wild birds and humans. Mosquitoes acquire the disease-spreading feature after receiving the virus from pigs and wild birds. The mosquito carries the Japanese Encephalitis virus to animals and humans during the feeding process. The disease is not transmitted from person to person (by kissing, touching) or from animals to human.
Japanese Encephalitis Symptoms
Most infections progress with no symptoms or mild symptoms. Clinical disease develops in 1% of people infected with the virus. The incubation period is 5-15 days. In symptomatic cases, the severity of the disease varies. From mild infection to fever, headache, vomiting or aseptic meningitis, tables may occur. In a small percentage of infected people, brain inflammation (encephalitis) develops with symptoms such as sudden onset headache, high fever, disorientation, coma, chills, and contraction. After recovery, neurological damage may remain. The result is fatal in 25% of severe clinical cases.
Diagnosis and Treatment
For diagnosis, blood and cerebrospinal fluid tests are performed. There is no specific treatment for the disease. Severe cases are hospitalized and supportive therapy (respiratory support, fluid support) is applied.
Risk for Passengers
Japanese Encephalitis occurs in many countries in Asia, in the Western Pacific. Firstly, contamination occurs in rural agricultural areas in relation to rice production and irrigation. In the eastern parts of China, Japan, the Korean Peninsula and the Russian federation, the disease occurs mainly in the summer and autumn, in temperate regions. The risk persists throughout the year in the tropical and subtropical regions. As a result of vaccination, the frequency of Japanese Encephalitis has decreased in Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam, more recently in some parts of China, Japan and the Republic of Korea. The risk of Japanese Encephalitis is very low, especially in urban areas, for short-term travel. However, the risk varies according to the season (risk is high during the monsoon season), type of accommodation, activities and travel time. People who stay in good hotels and have little exposure to mosquito bites have a low risk. However, those who are in the endemic regions, those who are in the rural areas, those who do activities that require long-term outdoor activities (such as hiking, biking, fishing), campers may be at high risk.
Protection to Japanese Encephalitis
Japanese encephalitis vaccine is available. The protection of the vaccine is high. Within 1 month, 2 or 3 doses are administered, with the last dose being 1 week prior to travel. The vaccine is recommended for those whose trips will take longer than 1 month. Vaccines are also recommended for those who spend a long time outside the urban area and travel to epidemics. It is important to take precautions against mosquito bites as well as vaccination.
For this purpose:
- Wear clothing that will cover the body, such as a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, hat.
- Use fly repellent sprays with high active ingredient (eg DEET). If you are going to use sunscreen, apply sunscreen first, fly repellent on it.
- Take care to stay in air-conditioned and sheltered places.