What is Malaria ?
It’s a mosquito borne infectious disease caused by plasmodium and is widely spread in tropical and sub tropical countries. It starts from a mosquito bite to fever then headache, reaching towards coma and finally death!!
History of Malaria
Plasmodium can be called as a human pathogen since our species is on earth. It starts from 50000 years ago. Gorillas and Chimpanzees also carry relatives of human malaria parasites. From recorded evidence periodic fevers of malaria were found in 2700 B.C. China. It was primarily known as ‘Roman fever ‘because it has been believed to be the cause of the decline of whole Roman Empire. It got its name from Italian words Mala and aria which together mean bad air relating it to the swamps and marshy areas. It was common in Europe and North America once but its not an endemic there now. 500,000 US troops were affected by malaria during World War II. 60,000 of them died during Africa and South pacific campaigns. A French army doctor first studied these parasites in RBC in 1880. In 1896 this disease was confirmed in India. The doctor was Charles Louis Alphonse Laveran and he was awarded Nobel Prize in 1907. In 1898 Calcutta, India Pr. Ronald Ross showed that it was spread due to mosquitos.
Cause Of Malaria
So, the one parasite who’s not gonna get a single place even in hell is Plasmodium and it is the Guinness world record holder for causing 1 million deaths per year out of 250 million affected cases. Plasmodium has mainly 5 species in which the most, severe one is Plasmodium Falciparum, then is the malaria causing Plasmodium Vivax and the milder ones are Plasmodium Ovale and Plasmodium Malaries which are rarely fatal. The fifth one is Plasmodium Knowlesi responsible for causing Malaria in Macaques but can affect us too.
Mosquitoes are the carriers of Plasmodium and they are the females of Anopheles Genus of mosquitoes. Males depend on plant nectar while females go for human blood. Mosquitoes go becomes infected from an infected human and carries plasmodium in their salivary glands and then at the time of another blood meal they transfer it to a new human host. According to WHO’s 2010 report, 781000 people of 225 million affected die per year. 2.25 % of the world wide deaths are due to Malaria. Most of the children below 5 years in sub Saharan Africa are prone to death only because of poverty.
Symptoms of Malaria
– Joint pain.
– Retinal Damage.
– Severe Brain Damage.
Children and pregnant women are more prone to malaria. Severe malaria can lead to coma and death. Even in intensive care it can increase 20 % so it is truly a vital disease.
Prevention And Treatment
Malaria usually occurs in areas of low sanitary facilities which are breeding grounds of Mosquitoes. So only one thing you can do is kill them before they kill you. So use insecticides and save yourself using nets and other equipments. If all this is done to a large extend it decreases rate of mosquito human contact and then totally eradicate the parasite from that area.
And if you are effected then you can use several drugs as mefloquine, doxycycline and atovaquone. You can choose the drugs by knowing about you are in which area and parasites of that region are resistant of that drug or not and always do what a doctor prescribes. Several drugs also have adverse side – effects. Mainly all of them were developed from Quinine but now quinine is not much used.
An Article By : HappyChappy And SumoPunk.