Malaria

Malaria infects 300 – 5090 million people worldwide, causing over 1 million deaths each year and threatens the lives of approx 40% of the world’s population. It takes one bite from a mosquito for you to become of the affected people.

The dangers of Malaria are not really recognised by humans, in some cases it can lead to kidney failure, seizures, coma or even death.  Malaria is preventable and treatable, yet it remains one of the major causes of death worldwide. It is an infectious disease caused by the Plasmodium parasite and is carried from person to person by an infected female Anopheles mosquitoes.

All travellers to malarious areas must be aware of the risk of malaria in the areas they visit. Use mosquito repellent with DEET ( Diethyltoluamide) on both your skin and clothes. Ensure to keep your arms , legs and feet covered with light coloured clothing. There are different anitmalarial options and one will suit you. Speak to your GP about preventative medication. The main initial symptoms are often mistaken for flu, can include headache, vomiting, fatigue, nausea, muscular pains, mild diarrhoea and fever.

Malaria spreads by infected mosquito biting a human. Within 30 minutes the parasite has attacked the liver. The parasite starts reproducing in the liver and can can lie dormant in the liver and become active years after the initial infections. They then get into the blood stream and attaches and enters the red blood cells and further reproduction occurs. The infected red blood cells burst and infects other blood cells.  This repeating cycle depletes the body of oxygen and causes a fever.  The cycle coincides with malaria’s fever and chills. After release, a dormant version of malaria travels through the host’s blood stream, waiting to be ingested by another mosquito to carry it to a new host.  The malaria parasite depends on both humans and mosquitoes to carry out its deadly cycle of life.

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