Japanese encephalitis is a mosquito-borne virus that leads to swelling of the brain. It can affect the central nervous system and cause severe complications, even death.
These risk factors increase your chance of developing Japanese encephalitis. Tell your doctor if you have any of these risk factors:
Symptoms of Japanese encephalitis usually appear 5-15 days after the bite from an infected mosquito. If you experience any of these symptoms, do not assume it is due to Japanese encephalitis. These symptoms may be caused by other conditions. Tell your doctor if you have any of these:
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history, and do a physical exam. Tests may include the following:
Since there is no specific treatment for Japanese encephalitis, care is focused on treating specific symptoms and complications.
There is a Japanese encephalitis vaccine. It is recommended for people who live or travel in certain parts of Asia and for lab workers who are at risk of exposure to the virus.
Also, take the following measures to protect yourself from mosquito bites:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Public Health Agency of Canada
CDC Japanese encephalitis home page. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dvbid/jencephalitis/ . Accessed November 19, 2009.
Japanese encephalitis. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov... . Accessed April 20, 2007.
Japanese encephalitis. Directors of Health Promotion and Education website. Available at: http://www.dhpe.org/infect/jpenceph.html. Accessed . Accessed April 20, 2007.
Japanese encephalitis. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php . Accessed April 20, 2007.
Japanese encephalitis vaccine. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/vis/downloads/vis-je-ixiaro.pdf. Updated December 7, 2011. Accessed February 24, 2012.
Vaccine is key to preventing outbreaks of Japanese encephalitis. UNICEF website. Available at: http://www.unicef.org/infobycountry/india_28555.html. Accessed . Accessed April 20, 2007.
Last reviewed December 2011 by Lawrence Frisch, MD, MPH