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Health and safety forum

Itinerary help with medical needs (rabies shots)

Posted by aireick on 22/1/2013 at 22:53

Hi everyone-
I am in Chiang Mai Thailand and last evening when I was walking south through the old city 2 dogs from in front of a dark storefront started barking at me. I backed away to give them space but they pursued me and one started to aggressively try to attack and did manage to bite my leg. Thankfully I was wearing pants and upon closer inspection, I don't think that the dogs teeth actually punctured my pants, however I do have bite marks and it drew blood.

I went to the hospital and was given a tetanus booster as well as the first dose of VeroRab. I now have 4 remaining shots that I need to get over the next 4 weeks so I'm looking for itinerary advise.

I'm in SEA until February 13.
My current itinerary was to head to Chiang Khong/Huay Xai and take the slow boat to Luang Prabang then down to Vientiane and was hoping to get to the 4000 islands. Then I was going to fly down to Krabi and spend some time on the west coast/islands back in Thailand (this part of my trip I haven't figured out in great detail yet.

My questions:
Is going through Laos while I need to get more VeroRab vaccines a good idea?
Should I spend more time in Thailand for better/safer medical care?

Any other thoughts or suggestions?

#1 aireick has been a member since 22/1/2013. Posts: 3

Posted by somtam2000 on 22/1/2013 at 23:08 admin

I deleted the double post and moved this to travel health section as it is a better fit.

If you are still in Chiang Mai I would ask at the clinic that gave you the first shot.

I would GUESS that you'd be able to get a shot in Luang Prabang and Vientiane but anywhere else in Laos I'd guess would be pretty iffy. Firstly any hospital would have to have the serum in the first place, but secondly it needs to be kept refrigerated at all times -- so as soon as you're in an area that is subject to power outages, you have a potential problem.

If it was me, I'd be inclined to reverse the itinerary and head to the southern islands unless the clinic in Chiang Mai can confirm without doubt, you can get the shots in Laos.

One of our researchers was in Laos late last year and ended up dealing with the main hospital in Luang Prabang -- I got the impression it wasn't an experience he's keen to repeat.

Start at the clinic and take it from there.

Good luck

#2 somtam2000 has been a member since 21/1/2004. Location: Indonesia. Posts: 7,644
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Posted by aireick on 23/1/2013 at 10:00

Thanks for the reply and advice. I received similar advice from a few others though the doctor said that I "should" be ok in Laos and they will have the vaccine in most areas, however I'm gonna err on the side of caution. A bit of backtracking and some unplanned flights and I should be able to get some of my Laos plans worked in after I receive the Day 14 shot before my holiday ends.

#3 aireick has been a member since 22/1/2013. Posts: 3

Posted by Elspethmcg on 4/5/2014 at 09:33

Hello! Just a quick one for whoever might come across this problem in the future! I was in the same position and found two different types of rabies injection in Luang Prabang - the Chinese hospital had one sort and then a private clinic I was taken to had Verorab, the type I was after (though I could have gone with either of them I chose to continue with the same make). It is a very common vaccine and everyone was familiar with it. Vientiene definitely has it too, according to the medical staff I was communicating with.

#4 Elspethmcg has been a member since 4/5/2014. Posts: 1

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