Author | Ambka Mathur, PhD


Travel Risks:

August 01, 2005

ABSTRACT: Children are at greater risk than adults for many travel-related problems, such as barotitis and barotrauma associated with flying, cold and heat injury, drowning, and infection with geohelminths. Most of these problems can be avoided with appropriate measures. To prevent insect-borne diseases, advise parents to apply permethrin to their children's clothing before the trip and apply slow-release DEET (30% to 35% concentration) to their skin every 24 hours. Infection with ground-dwelling parasites can be avoided by wearing protective footwear. At high altitudes, infants and children may experience acute mountain sickness. Acetozolamide (5 mg/kg/d, divided bid or tid) is an effective prophylactic; however, it is contraindicated in patients with sulfa allergy. Some preventive measures that are effective in adults may not be appropriate for children; for example, several medications used to control motion sickness are ineffective and associated with significant side effects in children.