Travel to Kenya is very popular and rewarding with stunning scenery and fantastic culture but Kenya is a very large country and has potentially many risks that need preparing for. Popular destinations include Nairobi, Mombassa and the Indian Ocean beaches, Mt Kenya, Masai Mara and other National Parks, like Tsavo East and Tsavo West. Kenya is a very popular destination with aid and charity workers with a Nakuru being a popular destination for this. Due to the nature of work in local communities aid and charity workers along with those visiting friends and relatives are at the highest risk of issues when travelling to Kenya.
The following sections contain information on the risk of malaria, what vaccines are recommended and other important issues you may face when travelling to Kenya.
What is the risk of malaria in Kenya?
It is the opinion of Travelpharm that customers to Kenya are at high risk of contracting malaria and therefore they should observe strict bite avoidance measures and take anti malaria medicines in all areas of the country, except Nairobi.
Information made available by the WHO shows that in 2017 34.9 million people in Kenya lived in high risk transmission zones, with an estimated 3.5 million cases of malaria leading to nearly 13,000 unnecessary deaths. Unfortunately the battle against malaria is a difficult one with increasing numbers of cases since 2010. On a positive note the numbers of households using mosquito nets in the evening has increased with modelled data suggesting 75% of the population have access to/or slept under a net the previous night.
The following antimalarial tablets are suitable when travelling to Kenya:
› Atovaquone and Proguanil 250mg/100mg- Generic Alternative to Malarone
› Malarone Children's Tablets (for Children under 40kg weight)
› Lariam Tablets (Mefloquine 250mg)
Below is a table designed to show you what vaccines are mandatory, recommended or ones to consider when visiting Kenya:
Kenya has areas of high altitude in and around Nairobi. High altitude is defined as being over 2500m. Some notable examples in Kenya include:
Travel to high altitude can cause several conditions which include Acute Mountain Sickness (Altitude Sickness) and the more severe High Altitude Pulmonary Oedema (HAPE) and High Altitude Cerebral Oedema (HACE).
Symptoms of Acute Mountain Sickness include headache, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea and sleep disturbance Improvement will only occur by descending to lower altitudes. Complications can occur for persisting with ascent that can lead to swelling around the brain or fluid collecting in the lungs. Ultimately HAPE and HACE can prove fatal.
Prevention is by slow ascent (no more than 500m per day once over 3000m) and by ensuring travel to high altitude areas from low altitude areas is not done in a single day.
Travel Health Pro have an excellent resource for helping to determine a patients risk based on previous experience and elevation. The information is available here
Patients potentially at risk due to unavoidably rapid ascents, or those with previous experience of Acute Mountain Sickness may benefit from taking Acetazolamide (Diamox). Travelpharm offer a free online consultation service should you wish to purchase this.
Kenya has a high prevalence of reported cases of travellers diarrhoea with an expected risk of suffering illness greater than 20%.
It is important to ensure you observe strict hygiene and to be careful of what food and drink is being consumed. We have a handy guide available in our travel blog and we also stock a large selection of medicines to help ease your symptoms in our stomach and bowel section.
Travelpharm offer an Online Consultation service to make it simple and convenient for you to get hold of your anti malaria tablets without having to book a visit with your doctor. Our online consultation service means that we are able to ask you a number of questions during the ordering process, and when we receive your order it is reviewed by one of our pharmacists who will then dispense your items from our UK registered pharmacy.
How it works:
Ordering products with an online consultation service is simple:
1. Select Tablets
2. Complete Questions
Online Anti-Malaria Consultations:
If you are visiting a country that has risk of malaria, then it is important to take the necessary precautions so you do not pick up the disease when travelling. There are a range of anti malaria tablets available, and the type of tablet you require will depend on factors such as the area you are visiting, the length of stay, your medical history and drugs you may already be taking. All our medicine are legallysourced and dispensed in the UK, our credentials can be checked against the General Pharmaceutical Councils register.
Travelpharm supply popular anti malaria tablets, such as Malarone, Maloff, Doxycycline, Lariam, Atovaquone & Proguanil, which are generic Malarone tablets. These tablets are designed to provide protection from malaria, however certain tablets are designed to be taken at different stages, the table below shows how and when the tablets should be take. Always read the product leaflet before taking any tablets:
(Atovaquone & Proguanil)
|How often should tablets be taken?||1 tablet each day when in the risk area|| 1 tablet each day |
in risk area
|1 tablet each week|
|When should I start treatment?|| 2 days before entering |
the risk area
|2 days before entering the risk area||10 days before entering the risk area|
|How often when leaving risk area?|| 7 days when leaving |
the risk area
|4 weeks after leaving the risk area|| 4 weeks after leaving the risk area|