Medical Definition of Travel-related disease

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Reviewed on 12/11/2018

Travel-related disease: A disease to which travelers are susceptible specifically because of their travel. Travel-related diseases are the purview of travel medicine. Travel medicine is not really new but it began to flourish in the 1980's, due to the growing numbers of people traveling internationally, especially to less developed areas of the world. Destinations once visited only by soldiers, missionaries and explorers became destinations for ordinary travelers from western countries. Along with the increase in this type of travel comes exposure to health risks that, in large part, are new to the western world.

There are scores of travel-related diseases. They include, but are not by any means limited to the following entities listed as travel-related diseases by the National Center for Infectious Diseases of the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). Entities marked with an asterisk (*) denote risks due to exposure to unimmunized persons.

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Reviewed on 12/11/2018