By
updated 10/13/2009 8:25:25 AM ET 2009-10-13T12:25:25

With swine flu getting all the media attention this year, outbreaks of these five other equally serious diseases have gone relatively unnoticed.

  1. Don't miss these Travel stories
    1. Lords of the gourd compete for Punkin Chunkin honors

      With teams using more than 100 unique apparatuses to launch globular projectiles a half-mile or more, the 27th annual World Championship Punkin Chunkin event is our pick as November’s Weird Festival of the Month.

    2. Airports, airlines work hard to return your lost items
    3. Expert: Tourist hordes threaten Sistine Chapel's art
    4. MGM Grand wants Las Vegas guests to Stay Well
    5. Report: Airlines collecting $36.1B in fees this year

PERTUSSIS

On the rise in: Australia, with a concentration around Sydney.

Effects: Similar to a bad cold and fever, accompanied by a severe cough with a whooping sound.

What to do: Keep up to date with your immunizations. A highly contagious respiratory infection, pertussis is spread through coughing or sneezing.

HAND, FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE

On the rise in: Asia, especially China.

Effects: Fever, skin rash with blisters, sores in the mouth.

What to do: There's no vaccine for HFMD, which mainly affects children under 10. It's spread by contact with unwashed hands or contaminated surfaces, so don't share eating utensils and make sure to wash up often.

CHIKUNGUNYA FEVER

On the rise in: Parts of Asia, including India and Thailand.

Effects: Fever, chills, vomiting, headache, and joint pain.

What to do: Like malaria and dengue, chikungunya is spread by mosquito bite, so use an insect repellent with deet. If you're also using sunscreen, apply it first; the bug spray will be more effective.

RABIES

On the rise in: Bali, particularly near the airport in Denpasar.

Don’t break these weird foreign laws!

Effects: A coma and death are likely. The vaccine alone may cause nausea, vomiting, headache, and dizziness.

What to do: Keep your distance from animals—dogs, cats, monkeys, and mongooses, all of which can spread rabies through their bites. If you're bitten, wash the wound immediately with soap and water and find out about the animal's vaccination history, if possible. See a doctor and follow the recommendations, which may include a series of vaccinations.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Copyright © 2012 Newsweek Budget Travel, Inc.

Discuss:

Discussion comments

,

Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments