London Travel Clinic

Tick Borne Encephalitis

What is it?

Tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) is spread by tick bites. It is a serious infection of the brain and is present in many countries worldwide.
Wild animals, particularly rodents, are the main hosts of TBE virus (TBEV) and maintain a reservoir of infection from which ticks act as vectors to humans.
Transmission occurs mainly from late spring 'till early autumn in forested/rural areas. 
Vaccination is advised for those in risk areas unable to avoid tick bites such as campers, forestry workers and ramblers.
There are three main subtypes of tick-borne encephalitis that are found in the following locations:
  • European - Western Europe to Russia
  • Siberian - Urals, Siberia, far-Eastern Russia, Finland
  • Far Eastern - far-Eastern Russia, China and Japan 
There are an estimated 10,000 cases annually in Russia and 3,000 in Europe, though the true number of incidents probably exceeds this by an substantial amount.
TBE is an emerging disease - incidence has risen dramatically in last 4 decades and is spreading to new areas particularly in Europe.
For a list of countries and maps please visit Tick Alert.

Vaccine Schedule

3 years to adult 
Standard schedule - 3 doses – day 0, 1-3 months later and 5- 12 months after the second dose.
Rapid Schedule - 3 doses - day 0, 14 days later and 5-12 months after the second dose.

Note: If someone is considered to be at high-risk, then medication can be given from 18 months following thorough risk assessment.

Booster – every 3 years after a primary course as above. then every 3 - 5 years if at continuing risk.

Cost Per Dose

Avoiding Ticks

Ticks normally become attached to skin or clothing after brushing against bracken or long grass and then migrate to warm moist areas of the body such as groins or axillae to feed.  To avoid this apply an effective insect repellent to skin. DEET insect repellent is recommended.
Avoid unnecessary exposure in infested areas. Keep to paths.
Clothing should cover the legs with socks outside trousers. Insect repellents can be used to impregnate exposed clothing such as trousers and socks DEET products are recommended. 
Avoid untreated/ pasteurised dairy products in countries where TBE is present.
Carry a tick remover so ticks can be safely and easily removed as soon as possible.
We have a good supply of insect repellents, clothing spray and tick removers in our clinic 

For information on tick-borne encephalitis and country recommendations information visit:

Categories: All Diseases


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