Diphtheria cases reported in Pernambuco, Brazil

Health authorities in the state of Pernambuco have reported 4 cases of diphtheria this year. One adolescent has died. The cases were reported in the municipality of Cha Grande.


Cases of diphtheria are very rare in this state, and the risk for the general traveller is very low. Nevertheless, travellers are reminded that outbreaks of the highly contagious diphtheria can occur anywhere in the world at any time. Diphtheria is a serious disease caused by a toxin (poison) made by the bacteria. Travellers can reduce their risk of exposure to infection by the highly contagious diphtheria by ensuring that their childhood vaccinations, including diphtheria (DPT), are up-to-date prior to travelling.