TB is common and is transmitted by coughing. The
visitor having casual sex should remember that women with HIV are
more likely to have TB.
Whereas influenza strikes Europeans in winter,
influenza is an all the year round problem in Asia.
Considering that probably 10% of travellers in an aircraft are sick
with a cough or cold, and that the cabin air is recirculated every
few minutes, you are certain to be breathing in the germs of other
passengers. The number of cases of influenza increases during the
rainy season; Thailand has 40,000 reported cases every month. This
disease is preventable by vaccination. Influenza pandemics occur
three to four times each century, and the next pandemic is expected
Avian Influenza (H5N1)
This disease is a zoonosis; i.e. spread from animal
to humans. Presently only persons handling chickens and objects
contaminated by sick chickens are at risk. Properly cooked chicken
is safe to eat. If the tourist stays away from poultry farms and
local markets selling live chickens, he/she is not presently at
risk of bird flu. However, the concern is that if this virus mutates
to one that is easily transmitted between humans, or combines with
the human influenza virus, then there could be a bird flu pandemic
killing millions of people.
Severe acute respiratory syndrome affected 8,098
persons of whom 774 died in the 2003 outbreak. Death was due to
an overwhelming pneumonia caused by the coronavirus found in civets.
In this disease there was human to human spread. There are presently
no known cases in the world.