What is Malaria?
Malaria is a serious disease that spreads when an infected mosquito bites a human. Tiny parasites can infect mosquitoes. When it bites, the mosquito injects malaria parasites into the person’s bloodstream.
If it isn’t treated, malaria can cause severe health problems such as seizures, brain damage, trouble breathing, organ failure and death. The disease is rare in the United States. If you’re travelling to an area where malaria is common, talk to your provider about malaria prevention.
Malaria is an infectious disease spread by mosquitoes, in particular female mosquitoes of the genus Anopheles. Malaria is a disease that is found in hundreds of different countries around the world and over 3 billion people are at risk from the disease.
What are the symptoms of Malaria?
Malaria symptoms usually appear 10 days to one month after the person was infected. Symptoms can be mild. Some people don’t feel sick for up to a year after the mosquito bite. Parasites can live in the body for several years without causing symptoms.
Signs of malaria are similar to flu symptoms. They include:
- Fever and sweating.
- Chills that shake the whole body.
- Headache and muscle aches.
- Chest pain, breathing problems and cough.
- Diarrhea, nausea and vomiting
How is Malaria diagnosed?
Your provider will examine you and ask about your symptoms and travel history. It’s important to share information about the countries you’ve visited recently so that your provider can clearly understand your risk.
To confirm a malaria diagnosis, your provider will take a sample of your blood and send it to a lab to check for malaria parasites. The blood test will indicate whether or not you have malaria and will also identify the type of parasite that’s causing your symptoms. This information helps your provider determine the right treatment.
How is Malaria treated?
Treatment for malaria should start as soon as possible. To treat malaria, your provider will prescribe drugs to kill the malaria parasite. Some parasites are resistant to malaria drugs. The type of medication and length of treatment depend on which parasite is causing your symptoms.
Antimalarial drugs include:
- Artemisinin drugs (artemether and artesunate).
What are the side effects of medications to treat Malaria?
Antimalarial drugs can cause side effects. Be sure to tell your provider about other medicines you’re taking, since antimalarial drugs can interfere with them. Depending on the medication, side effects may include:
- Gastrointestinal (GI) issues such as nausea and diarrhea.
- Increased sensitivity to sunlight.
- Insomnia and disturbing dreams.
- Psychological disorders and vision problems.
- Ringing in the ears (tinnitus).
Can I prevent Malaria?
If you live or travel in an area where malaria is common, talk to your provider about taking medications to prevent malaria. You will need to take the drugs before, during and after your stay.
You should also take precautions to avoid mosquito bites. To lower your chances of getting malaria, you should:
- Apply mosquito repellent with DEET (diethyltoluamide) to exposed skin.
- Drape mosquito netting over beds.
- Put screens on windows and doors.
- Treat clothing, mosquito nets, tents, sleeping bags and other fabrics with an insect repellent called permethrin.
- Wear long pants and long sleeves to cover your skin.
About Ziqitza Healthcare Ltd
Ziqitza has been around in the medical industry for more than 17 years and is known for motivating and caring attitude and approach towards its employees. It is known for providing emergency medical services and has treated and saved the lives of millions of patients. It is a trusted and reputed name in the medical industry. It is a leading healthcare firm with more than 800 ambulance services and aims at a healthy and balanced working environment for its employees. ZHL Rajasthan and Ziqitza Limited also share the same beliefs and provide full support to Ziqitza Healthcare ltd in their endeavors.