Do I need a prescription for DUKORAL®?
You do not need a prescription from a doctor if you are taking DUKORAL® to prevent enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC)-diarrhea, unless you live in Quebec. DUKORAL® is available at your local pharmacy. Be sure to speak with your healthcare professional about DUKORAL® before you travel to an at-risk area.
If you are taking DUKORAL® for cholera it does require a prescription.
Who should take DUKORAL®?
DUKORAL® is indicated for the prevention of heat-labile enterotoxigenic E. coli (LT-producing ETEC)-diarrhea and/or cholera for adults and children 2 years of age and older who will be visiting areas where there is a risk of contracting LT-producing ETEC-diarrhea or cholera caused by
DUKORAL® may be used by mothers who are breastfeeding and older adults. It may also be given to people who have a compromised immune system – including those who are HIV-infected – however, the vaccine may provide them with a lower level of protection than it does in people with a healthy immune system.
Who should not take DUKORAL®?
DUKORAL® is not recommended for use in pregnancy. If you are pregnant, your doctor will discuss the possible risks and benefits of taking DUKORAL® during pregnancy.
It is also not recommended for travellers who have a fever or an acute gastrointestinal illness. If you have diarrhea or a fever, you should postpone taking DUKORAL® until the illness has passed. However, you may take the vaccine if you have a mild illness, such as a cold.
People who have an allergy to any ingredient of DUKORAL®, its container, or to formaldehyde should not take the DUKORAL® vaccine.
How do I take DUKORAL® to make sure I'm protected?
It is very important to follow the DUKORAL® dosing instructions carefully. This includes both how to prepare DUKORAL® and when to take DUKORAL®.
How long does protection last with DUKORAL®?
Protection against diarrhea caused by heat-labile producing enterotoxigenic E. coli (LT-producing ETEC) and cholera begins about 1 week after the last dose taken.
Protection against diarrhea caused by heat-labile producing enterotoxigenic E. coli (LT-producing ETEC) lasts for about 3 months.
Protection against cholera lasts for about 2 years in adults and children 6 years and older, and for about 6 months in children who are 2 to 6 years old.
For diarrhea caused by heat-labile toxin producing enterotoxigenic E. coli (LT-producing ETEC):
If you have taken DUKORAL® in the last 3 months to 5 years, a single dose will renew your protection. A single-dose DUKORAL® format is available from your pharmacist, and should be taken at least one week before you travel.
- Children 2 to 6 Years: If your child received their last dose of DUKORAL® between 6 months and 5 years before, one booster dose will be sufficient to renew their protection.
- Adults and Children 6 Years and Older: If you or your child received your/their last dose of DUKORAL® between 2 and 5 years before, one booster dose will be sufficient to renew your/their protection.
Can DUKORAL® cause any side effects?
The side effects of DUKORAL® are usually mild. The most common side effects of DUKORAL® are abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting. Some people who receive DUKORAL® may feel feverish.
Potentially serious side effects include dehydration and shortness of breath; however, these side effects occur very rarely.
How else can I protect myself against enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC)-diarrhea and cholera?
Besides taking DUKORAL®, it’s important to use care in your choices of food and water, and to follow good hygienic practices:
- When possible, boil, peel or cook your own food
- Avoid uncooked foods in restaurants, especially shellfish or salads
- Drink bottled or boiled water
- Wash your hands thoroughly before eating and after using toilet facilities