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How to Prepare for Your Pre-Travel Appointment

There are many things your doctor will need to know to help give you the best advice for your trip. Think about the following questions before you visit your doctor.

  • When are you traveling, and how long will you be at each location?
  • Where are you traveling?
    • Which countries are you visiting?
    • If you are visiting more than one country, in what order will you visit these countries?
    • Where within the country or countries will you be traveling?
    • Are these destinations urban or rural?
    • Where will you be staying (sleeping) during your trip (such as hotel with air conditioning, screened cabin, open-air tents, or with family or friends)?
  • What activities will you be doing during your trip (such as hiking, backpacking, scuba diving, sightseeing, visiting family or friends, etc.)?
  • Have you traveled internationally in the past?
    • Where did you go?
    • When did you travel?
  • How old are you?
  • What vaccinations have you had before?
    • Do you have or could you get a written record of your previous vaccinations?
    • When did you have these vaccinations?
    • How many doses did you have of a particular vaccine? (for example, some vaccines, such as the hepatitis A and B vaccines or the measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine, require multiple doses for long-term protection)
    • Have you had any allergies or reactions to vaccines?
  • Do you have any other allergies (for example, medicines, foods, or environmental)?
    • In particular, do you have an allergy to eggs, latex, yeast, mercury, or thimerosal?
  • What is your medical history and current health status? Be sure to tell your doctor about past illnesses and surgeries, chronic health problems, or other underlying medical conditions.
  • What medications are you currently taking or have you taken in the past 3 months?
  • Is your immune system suppressed?
  • If you are a female,
    • Are you pregnant now?
    • Are you trying to become pregnant, or will you try to become pregnant in the next 3 months?
    • Are you breast-feeding?