Located in the western part of the South American continent is the beautiful and ancient country of Peru. It is better known for its history, rich cultural heritage, traditions and beautiful surroundings. However, one needs to be a bit circumspect while planning a visit to this country since Peru is also notoriously famous for its infectious diseases
Prominent among these is chloroquine-resistant malaria, an insect-borne illness that occurs due to infection with Plasmodium vivax parasite. Outbreaks of this disease happen in Peru time and again. Some of the symptoms of this disease include chills, fever, sweats, headache, body ache, nausea, vomiting and fatigue. If the victim gets infected with Plasmodium falciparum, he/she can suffer from some life threatening complications such as meningitis, kidney failure, coma and death. Travelers are advised to carry anti-malarial drugs and insect repellants while traveling to Peru.
Other insect-borne diseases that are widely prevalent in Peru include yellow fever, dengue, filariasis, leishmaniasis, onchocerciasis and American trypanosomiasis or Chagas disease. In fact, yellow fever and dengue are endemic in certain parts of Peru. Apart from these, there have been epidemics of viral encephalitis occurring in certain parts of the country. Apart from these, another disease that occurs very commonly on the western slopes of Andes is Bartonellosis or Oroya fever, a dreaded infection caused due to sand fly bite. Also, louse-borne typhus is a rickettsial parasite that infects people living in the mountainous regions of Peru.
The Republic of Peru is also famous for certain water-borne infections. Prominent among these are schistosomiasis, cholera, diarrhea, dysentery, amoebiasis and Hepatitis A. Environment in Peru is ideal for the transmission of Leptospirosis, a zoonotic disease that occurs due to infection with Leptospira.
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