Malaria

Malaria is a serious illness that, if left untreated, can prove to be fatal in some cases. However, providing that you adequately protect yourself before, during and after your travels, you can travel with peace of mind that you can avoid the symptoms of this illness.

    • What Is Malaria?
    • Malaria Prevention
    • Where Can You Get Malaria?
    • Malaria Symptoms
    • Malaria Causes

What Is Malaria?

Malaria is a disease that is caused by a number of parasites that are collectively referred to as plasmodium. These parasites enter the body, often as the result of a mosquito bite, and begin to reproduce and spread at an alarming rate. The consequences are symptoms including shivering, fever, vomiting, joint pain, retinal damage or convulsions, and if the parasite is not effectively removed from the body at speed, these symptoms can worsen dramatically.

Malaria Prevention

As with most illnesses, the best advice is a strong form of protection against the parasites that cause malaria before you arrive in the area where the disease is prevalent. This can be achieved by taking a prescribed malaria prevention treatment, which patients will usually begin taking a few days before they enter their destination, and continue to take throughout their trip and for some weeks afterwards.

These medicines help the body to fight off the parasites, as well as stopping the reproduction of the parasites to stop the spread of the illness. To that end, similar or identical medicines are often used for treatment of the disease in its early stages. Examples of anti-malarial treatment include; Doxycycline, Lariam, Malarone, Mefloquine, Paludrine and an Anti-Malarial Travel Pack

Whilst in malarial zones people individuals should take precautions against being bitten by mosquitoes. This may include the use of mosquito nets, and keeping windows closed at night.

Where Can You Get Malaria?

Whilst it is true that the parasite that causes malaria can be found in many locations around the world, the so-called hotspots are those places where the parasite is easily transported from person to person due to a high mosquito population.. If you are planning to travel to any of these regions, you should be sure to adequately protect yourself against this condition in advance.

Malaria Symptoms

The speed at which malaria symptoms appear varies depending on the specific variety of the illness that a patient is suffering from. Most commonly, symptoms appear after approximately two weeks, but in some cases they can take up to one year to become noticeable. In the case of the most serious forms of the disease, symptoms can appear as quickly as within 24 hours.

The most frequently encountered symptoms of the illness include:

 

  • A high temperature
  • Joint pain
  • Convulsions
  • Vomiting
  • Shivering
  • Headaches
  • Coughing
  • Diarrhoea

Malaria Causes

The malaria disease is caused by one of a group of parasites that are known as plasmodium. These parasites are carried by mosquitoes throughout their lifetime, and present no form of illness to them. However, if a mosquito bites a human and these parasites enter the bloodstream, they begin to reproduce and spread through the body at great speed. This has a severe effect on the health of the body, presenting uncomfortable symptoms and ultimately using up the body’s vital resources.