I have Typhoid, Hep A, Tetanus and Whooping Cough


In preparing to go to India to show off SWARM, I had to get stuck with a bunch of needles. Joy.

I got my immunizations at the San Francisco Department of Public Health Adult Immunization & Travel Clinic

They knew which vaccines I needed but I checked up myself with the CDC here and here.

I made an appointment a few days in advance. It took about 1.5 hours with the interview, shots and discussion.

I received

  • Typhoid – 4 pills taken every other day for 8 days. Take at least 1 week before travel. Don’t take with antibiotics (my antimalarial is an antibiotic!). Effective for 5 years.
  • Doxycycline – Antimalarial.  1 pill a day starting 2 days before travel, ending 28 days after. Most other antimalarials have a very high incidence of side effects like hallucinations and psychosis! Everyone (5 out of 5) (update 12-5-11: 6 out of 6, Michael Sturtz too) I’ve ever spoken to about antimalarials has said their mental state was strongly negatively influenced by other antimalarials like mefloquine!
  • Polio – injection. You should get 1 booster in a lifetime. This was it.
  • TDAP – Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis. injection. Effective for 10 years
  • Hepatitis A – injection. Effective for 10 years. I need to go back in 6 months for a booster
  • Azithromycin 500 mg – 3 oral antibacterial goofballs to take with me in case of illness while travelling (update: I needed it after a meal, good thing I had it!)
  • Hep B immunization (Lee already got in 2005. Effective for 10 years.)
  • MMR  – Measles Mumps Rubella – 2 shots needed in a lifetime. By 1990 almost all colleges required boosters. Effective for life.
  • Ultrathon 34% DEET insect repellent (Followup: I’m VERY glad I got and used this!)

Total bill from San Francisco Department of Health: $307
I have to pick up the Azithromycin  and Doxycycline prescriptions from Costco. (you don’t need a membership to buy from their pharmacy. It was crazy cheap, like $7 for each.)

A day later, both my arms hurt and are stiff from the injections. A few days after that, I felt “under the weather” as if a cold was coming on. Then all was well.

I’ll have to pick up some permethrin for my clothes from REI and I’m ready to go. (Followup: I’m glad I did!)

Whoever said international travel was fun was in the middle of a psychotic episode from the mefloquine.

And it sucks but this post belongs in the “Art” category.

One Comment

  1. […] I went to India in February 2010 to present technology and art at Techkriti. If you are American preparing to go to India, this advice will make your trip much more enjoyable […]

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