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Top 10 questions: Tick-borne encephalitis

Margaret Umeed looks at what should be considered when advising travellers about this condition

Tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) is a human viral infectious disease involving the central nervous system. It occurs in eastern, central and northern European countries, and in northern China, Mongolia and the Russian Federation.1

Not to be confused with Lyme disease (which is caused by a bacteria), the virus is harboured in a variety of small mammals, domestic livestock and certain species of birds.

1 What is tick-borne encephalitis?

TBE is one of the world’s arboviruses; ie a virus that is transmitted in most cases through the bite of an infected insect, in this case, an infected tick.1 The virus is carried in the wild by a variety of animals, such as voles, sheep and deer, and is transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected tick.

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