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The yellow fever vaccine

Sarah Kelsey is a lifestyle writer, editor and spokesperson based in Toronto. She was the editor of AOL/The Huffington Post Canada’s StyleList, Style and Living sites. Today, she's a freelancer writing for some of North America’s top pub...

Preventing yellow fever

Yellow fever is a viral disease that is transmitted through bites from infected mosquitoes. The potentially serious infection can be prevented by the yellow fever vaccine, which is recommended for people traveling to high-risk areas such as South America and Africa.

Preventing yellow fever

What is yellow fever?

Yellow fever is a serious infection caused by a bite from an infected mosquito. Symptoms can range from intestinal bleeding to organ failure and even death. The disease is common in tropical, rural, jungle-like areas of South America and Africa.

Who gets it?

Anyone traveling to regions where yellow fever is common should receive the single-dose vaccine, which provides immunity to the disease for up to 10 years. It should not be given to children younger than 6 months or those who have a compromised immune system.

What are the side effects?

Less than 20 percent of people who are vaccinated will experience side effects to the vaccine, which can include headache, muscle pain and swelling at the injection site.

Vaccine recommendations

Many agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, recommend the vaccine for people traveling to high-risk areas such as South America and Africa.

What you need to know

You should avoid the yellow fever vaccine if you are allergic to eggs.

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