Malaria Malaria is a mosquito-borne infectious disease caused by a eukaryotic protist of the genus Plasmodium. It is widespread in tropical and subtropical regions, including parts of the Americas (22 countries), Asia, and Africa.
Signs and symptoms Symptoms of malaria include fever, shivering, arthralgia (joint pain), vomiting, anemia (caused by hemolysis), hemoglobinuria , retinal damageand convulsions. The classic symptom of malaria is cyclical occurrence of sudden coldness followed by rigor and then fever and sweating lasting four to six hours, occurring every two days in P.
Causes Malaria parasites are members of the genus Plasmodium (phylum Apicomplexa). In humans malaria is caused by P. falciparum, P. malariae, P. ovale, P. vivax and P. knowlesi.
control malaria Key interventions to control malaria include: prompt and effective treatment with artemisinin-based combination therapies; use of insecticidal nets by people at risk; and indoor residual spraying with insecticide to control the vector mosquitoes.
Treatment Active malaria infection with P. falciparum is a medical emergency requiring hospitalization. Infection with P. vivax, P. ovale or P. malariae can often be treated on an outpatient basis. Treatment of malaria involves supportive measures as well as specific antimalarial drugs. Most antimalarial drugs are produced industrially and are sold at pharmacies. However, as the cost of such medicines are often too high for most people in the developing world, some herbal remedies (such as Artemisia annua tea) have also been developed, and have gained support from international organisations such as Médicins Sans Frontières. When properly treated, someone with malaria can expect a complete recovery.
facts on malaria About 3.3 billion people - half of the world's population - are at risk of malaria. Every year, this leads to about 250 million malaria cases and nearly one million deaths. People living in the poorest countries are the most vulnerable.
Malaria is especially a serious problem in Africa, where one in every five (20%) childhood deaths is due to the effects of the disease. An African child has on average between 1.6 and 5.4 episodes of malaria fever each year. And every 30 seconds a child dies from malaria.