On Wednesday, I went down to the state health department to get pills to prevent Typhoid Fever while in Cambodia. These pills work by taking a total of four of them every other day in a period of a week. Pretty simple. However, side-effects are the worst part of the whole experience. For me, they include: tiredness, cough, sore throat (a huge pain), AJ's allergies acting up, grogginess, and nausea. I've skipped out on the worst part of nausea by taking the pills at night before going to sleep. It's quite a tedious process because we have to take it at the same time every other day. If we miss a dose, we have to start all over again, so we're trying really hard to avoid that.
As for Malaria pills, we are supposed to begin taking pills 2-5 days before entering the endemic area. What I've heard so far is that these pills are only useful in protecting us in rural areas, which we won't be in so much. We'll be mainly in the capital, Phnom Penh, hence the dilemma of whether or not to take them. As a public health major, I understand the value of prevention over treatment, but if I'm not going to an endemic area... Side effects: yeast infection, sun sensitivity, nausea, stomach pain, and possible "vivid dreams and visual disturbances." I'll think about it.
The other set of vaccinations recommended on the U.S. Travel website list for Cambodia is Japanese Encephalitis. Again, this is mainly encountered in rural areas. Another draw back is the cost. These shots are at least $450-1,100!!
I also got three months worth of nerve pain meds. Yes...that was quite a lot out out of my budget for meds. At least I have health covered. Let's hope there will be minimal health complications in country. I'm getting pretty nervous yet excited at the same time. Wish me luck!!!