In this article today am going to discuss Malaria Parasite in the following headings listed below
- WHAT IS MALARIA.
- MALARIA SPECIES.
- CAUSE/MODE OF TRANSMISSION OF MALARIA.
- SYMPTOMS OF MALARIA.
- LIFE THREATENING COMPLICATIONS OF MALARIA.
- TREATMENT OF MALARIA.
- PREVENTION OF MALARIA.
WHAT IS MALARIA?
Malaria Parasite is a life-threatening disease that is transmitted through the bite of an Anopheles mosquito
this parasite is mostly found in subtropical and tropical regions where this parasite breed well,
When a mother with malaria passes it on to her baby at birth, it is called CONGENIAL MALARIA.
Malaria is widespread in every continent except Antarctica.
This disease is responsible for the death of over 600,000 million people yearly.
The first effective treatment for malaria came from the bark of cinchona tree, which contains quinine.
- Plasmodium falciparum is the most common malaria parasite species and is commonly found in sub-Saharan Africa. It is responsible for the majority of malaria deaths globally. It is the most life threatening malaria species.
- Plasmodium vivax is the second most significant malaria parasite species and is responsible for the majority of malaria infections in Southeast Asia and Latin America. Plasmodium ovale and Plasmodium malaria represent only a small percentage of infections.
- Plasmodium Knowler is a species that infects primates but has also led to human malaria, although the exact mode of transmission remains unknown.
CAUSE/MODE OF TRANSMISSION
Malaria is transmitted by the anopheles mosquito which bites between dusk to dawn. It carries the Plasmodium parasite into your bloodstream.
from the bloodstream, the parasite moves to the organ called liver where it matures,
After several days, these mature parasites re-enter the bloodstream and begin to infect red blood cells. About the
48 – 72 hours the parasite in the blood stream multiplies which results in bursting open of the red cells,
this parasite infects the RBC(red blood cells) these infection results in symptoms that last for about 2 – 3 days.
Malaria is transmitted by blood and can, therefore, be transmitted through:
- An organ transplant
- Blood transfusion
- Use of shared needles or syringe
SYMPTOMS OF MALARIA
Symptoms of malaria ideally develop ten days – four weeks n individual gets infected with the parasite. At times, the symptoms may not develop for several months.
Common symptoms of malaria include:
- High fever
- Profuse sweating
- Abdominal pain
- Muscle pain
- Bloody stools
Recommend: Read my previous article on Lassa fever
LIFE THREATENING COMPLICATIONS OF MALARIA
Malaria is a very deadly disease and can result in:
- Swells the blood vessels of the brain(cerebral malaria).
- pulmonary edema ( accumulation of fluids in the lungs)
- Organ failure of the kidneys, liver or spleen.
- Anemia due to the destruction of red blood cells.
- Low blood sugar.
TREATMENT OF MALARIA
A physical examination will be conducted at the hospital including some blood tests.
These tests will show the following:
- Whether you have malaria.
- What type of malaria you have.
- The parasite that caused your infection.
- Whether the parasite is resistant to certain types of drugs.
- Whether the disease has caused anemia.
- Whether the disease has affected your vital organs.
PREVENTION OF MALARIA
Mosquitoes dwell in dirty environments and places with stagnant water. In order to prevent malaria we must ensure the following: -keep our surroundings clean.
- Use proper drainage systems to avoid stagnant water.
- Dispose of every waste properly.
- Use treated mosquito nets.
- Use bug sprays containing DEET We must note that there is no vaccine available to prevent malaria so we must take proper precaution.
DRUGS FOR MALARIA (ANTI-MALARIA DRUGS)
- Artemether-lumefantrine (Coartem®)
- Mefloquine (Lariam®)
- Atovaquone-proguanil (Malarone®)
- Doxycycline (used in combination with quinine)
You can read more on malaria #link
Hope this article on malaria parasite enlightens you on the featured characteristic and how to prevent this deadly parasite.
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