Be Sure to Check Centers for Disease Prevention on Vaccinations for your travel country. While rare contracted, I was surprised to see a recommendation to obtain a Hepatitis A shot for the southern Mediterranean region.
Just to be clear, Hepatitis vaccination will require more than one shot. The Hepatitis A vaccine is 2 injections, spaced 6 months apart. The combined Hepatitis A/B vaccination requires 3 shots within 30 days, with a booster 12 months later. So don't leave it til the last minute.
And do get it, even if you are not traveling. Although it's considered by many to be the most benign of the types of hepatitis it can make you pretty darn ill. And, we've had epidemics here, San Diego most prominently on the west coast. My wife picked it up as a souvenir of our visit. The vaccine renders you immune for life.
My first Hep A shot made me so sick that I didn’t go back for the second shot. Guess I’d rather be half protected than sick from the shot.
CDC Hepatitis A Vaccine Information Statement:
Why get vaccinated? Hepatitis A is a serious liver disease. It is
caused by the hepatitis A virus (HAV). HAV is spread from person to
person through contact with the feces (stool) of people who are
infected, which can easily happen if someone does not wash his or her
hands properly. You can also get hepatitis A from food, water, or
objects contaminated with HAV.
Hepatitis A can cause liver failure and death, although this is rare
and occurs more commonly in persons 50 years of age or older and
persons with other liver diseases, such as hepatitis B or C.
Hepatitis A vaccine can prevent hepatitis A. Hepatitis A vaccines were
recommended in the United States beginning in 1996. Since then, the
number of cases reported each year in the U.S. has dropped from around
31,000 cases to fewer than 1,500 cases.
Risks of a vaccine reaction With any medicine, including vaccines,
there is a chance of side effects. These are usually mild and go away
on their own, but serious reactions are also possible.
Most people who get hepatitis A vaccine do not have any problems with
Minor problems following hepatitis A vaccine include:
soreness or redness where the shot was given
If these problems occur, they usually begin
soon after the shot and last 1 or 2 days.
Other problems that could happen after this vaccine:
Any medication can cause a severe allergic reaction. Such reactions
from a vaccine are very rare, estimated at about 1 in a million doses,
and would happen within a few minutes to a few hours after the
Wow! I just checked and Croatia is on the list. I guess I'll be talking to my doctor about getting the first shot since my trip is in May.