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Travel Med Infect Dis. 2014 May-Jun;12(3):219-28. doi: 10.1016/j.tmaid.2014.04.009. Epub 2014 May 6.

The medically immunocompromised adult traveler and pre-travel counseling: status quo 2014.

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  • 1Karolinska Institutet, Dept. of Medicine/Solna, Unit for Infectious Diseases, SE 17176 Stockholm, Sweden; Dept. of Communicable Diseases Control and Prevention, SE 118 91 Stockholm, Sweden. Electronic address:
  • 2Department of Immunology, Erasmus MC, 's-Gravendijkwal 230, 3015 CE Rotterdam, The Netherlands. Electronic address:


International travel is increasing among a growing number of medically immunosuppressed patients regaining life-activity due to efficient drugs. Adequate pre-travel advice for this group of patients requires not only a travel-medicine expert but a relevant specialist as well, so that a personalized plan can be made concerning vaccinations and other prophylaxis. Inactivated vaccines can generally be prescribed during immunosuppressive therapy; the risk of inducing an exacerbation of the underlying disease is minimal and even though the post-vaccination antibody response will often be impaired, it will possibly benefit the patient by means of inducing a milder course of the disease. Live vaccines are generally contraindicated and if the risk of getting the disease in a particular country is high, the potential risks must be carefully discussed with the patient. It is essential to try to prevent infections in this group of patients who are more vulnerable to serious complications caused by the immunosuppression. The aim of this review was to summarize the available literature on immunosuppressive drug mechanisms and evidence on pre-travel-vaccinations, malaria prophylaxis as well as drugs preventing tourist diarrhea. The immunocompromised conditions/drugs used in these conditions that are covered include solid organ transplantations (SOT), hematopoietic stem cell transplantations, splenectomy, and chronic inflammatory diseases in adults. HIV and pediatric patient populations are not included.

Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Counseling; Immunocompromised; Pre-travel; Travelers; Vaccination

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