Tick-borne Encephalitis (TBE)
Tick-borne Encephalitis (TBE) is a viral infection which affects the central nervous system, and is spread by infected ticks. TBE is most common in parts of Europe and Asia where there are high populations of ticks, particularly in rural or forested areas but is also on the increase in the UK. The peak biting times to humans are during the warmer months between spring and summer (April to November) when ticks are most active.
Symptoms of TBE can range from mild flu-like symptoms to severe encephalitis (inflammation of the brain). Initial symptoms typically include fever, headache, muscle aches, and fatigue. In more severe cases, symptoms can progress to include confusion, seizures, and paralysis. There are three subtypes of the virus depending upon location, and symptoms may be more severe in the Far Eastern and Siberian subtypes with a higher mortality risk.
Activities such as camping, walking and working in wooded areas below 2000m, increase the chances of being bitten by infected ticks. Travellers planning on visiting rural areas should be aware of how to avoid tick bites, such as avoiding tick-infested areas, wearing protective clothing, using tick repellents, and removing ticks promptly if they are found on the skin. Quick removal of a tick doesn’t, however, exclude infection.
A vaccine is available for TBE and is recommended for people who live in, or travel to, areas where the virus is prevalent. The vaccine provides long-lasting protection against TBE and is considered to be safe and effective.
Read more about the TBE vaccine, CityDoc pricing and the vaccination course here.