Three people who had traveled to Myanmar tested positive for typhoid in Feb 2013, the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said. Two students and a businessman who visited Myanmar in December 2012 and in January 2013 began to develop symptoms, including fever, headache, diarrhea and loss of appetite in February 2013.
Laboratory tests confirmed that all had typhoid fever, the CDC said. All were hospitalized, and two have since been discharged, it added. The center has traced and examined the 73 people who have had contact with the patients. None have developed typhoid-related symptoms. That brings the total of typhoid cases in 2013 to five; the other two patients had traveled to Indonesia.
There were 29 confirmed cases of imported typhoid fever, mainly from Indonesia, Myanmar, India, and the Philippines, between 2010 and 2012: 11 in 2010, 7 in 2011 and 11 in 2012.
Luo I-chun, a physician specializing in disease prevention at the center, advised people traveling to Southeast Asia to pay attention to personal hygiene and food sanitation and to avoid uncooked food such as salads. “Salads may be contaminated by unwashed hands or bacteria-carrying flies. Travelers are also advised to drink bottled water,” Luo said. Luo also suggested getting vaccinated before traveling to these areas. “There are 12 travel medical clinics where people can get vaccinated,” Luo said, adding that travelers have to be at least two years old to receive the vaccine.