When Heng falls ill he turns to the local shaman, whose diagnosis is that he has no
blood. Their solution is radical but effective. Read:
'The Disallowed'

Backpackers and Vampires in Thailand

Vampires in Thailand

Backpackers and Vampires in Thailand

Backpackers and Vampires in Thailand

Breaking News...

There are horrifying stories coming out of northern Thailand from backpackers and authorities concerning an illness that strikes mostly young, European women backpacking in Thailand and completely lays them out for up to a fortnight.

Most sufferers get better after a period of extreme illness but there have been a few deaths.

Doctors are baffled as to the cause of the illness, but symptoms are extreme fatigue and chronic aenemia followed by sudden and total kidney failure.

The illness does not appear to be infectious, but a trusted source admitted that the medical authorities just do not understand the cause of it.

"Doctors at Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai hospitals, where most of the sufferers have ended up, are completely stumped," she said.

"We can only assume that these poor people, who all seem to be backpackers travelling through northern Thailand, have caught something on the trails near Chiang Khong that was previously unknown.

"We are urging all backpackers in the Province of Chiang Rai to stay away from wild animals, which are the most likely cause suspected of the outbreak as some patients have tiny punctures in their necks.

"In the throws of delirium, some of the sufferers ramble about vampire bats, but as they are usually in a state of delusion and this phenomenon has never been reported in this area before,so doctors and the health authorities are not taking the claims seriously."

"The plain fact is that we just do not have South American vampire bats in Thailand," said a local veterinarian, "and even if they have migrated here, bites from vampire bats are not known to cause this type of sickness or to produce such extreme aenemia in the countries like Peru where they are common."

"It is strange, but it seems that almost exclusively white foreigners are contracting this disease, so doctors are working on the theory that the sickness originated abroad, possibly in Europe, and that the patients brought it here with them," said a local government spokesperson.

"It is true," said another source, "that no Thais or Laoations have been infected so far, so we have to assume that they are immune to this strange and probably foreign disease."

Doctors insist that there is no need for concern. Neither local inhabitants nor foreign visitors have anything to worry about from visiting the area, but they do urge all foreign backpackers intending to travel to northern Thailand on holiday to have a check up before leaving their country, so that they do not bring foreign diseases with them into the kingdom.

"A further precaution would be to stay in a room in a hotel or even budget accommodation for the duration of stay and to keep the windows closed at night."

It was pointed out that there have been no instances of this disease affecting anyone staying  in Bangkok or at the beach, where the use of accommodation is far more common than sleeping under the stars, as many backpackers do.

This is Wayne Gamm of Megan Publishing Services for Foxcub News in Chiang Rai, Northern Thailand.

by +Owen Jones