Caroline Penn, MD, CCFP, Travel Medicine & Vaccination Centre, Vancouver, BC.
Rusung Tan, MD, PhD, FRCPC, Travel Medicine & Vaccination Centre; Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC.
Cruise ships are a popular way for seniors to travel to all parts of the world. Although cruises are generally safe, day and overnight excursions to tropical countries can expose travellers to diseases such as malaria, yellow fever and dengue fever and to pathogens that cause diarrhea. Family physicians should ensure that those patients considering a cruise are medically stable and receive up-to-date travel medicine advice. With proper preparation and precautions against infectious and vector-borne illness, risks can be minimized and older people can benefit from the stimulation of travel.
Key words: cruise ships, older traveller, travel medicine, vaccinations, yellow fever, dengue, malaria.