ZocdocAnswers"If I need shots for international travel, how long does it take to administer these vaccinations?"

Question

"If I need shots for international travel, how long does it take to administer these vaccinations?"

I?m not sure if I need to see the doctor weeks or months before I travel.

Answer

This depends greatly on the location to which you are traveling and which vaccinations you have had in the past. If you are going to a 3rd world country, it may be that you will need additional shots to help to keep you safe. In some cases, these may be administered as a series of shots in order to achieve optimal efficacy. For that reason, it is excellent that you have already begun to have the conversation about what you need in order to be ready for your travels. Speaking with a travel medicine doctor, if there is one in your area, may prove to be invaluable. In other locations and depending on the level of comfort you have with your primary care doctor, he or she may be able to provide much the same service by accessing some of the available resources to determine what is needed before you can travel safely. This serves the added benefit of being able to then treat you as needed and optimize your other medications prior to travel, providing refills as needed. It is therefore best to begin speaking with your doctor several months before travel to a new country or area. Please speak with your doctor.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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