Directly go to the content
  • Health Blog

What You Dont Know About Malaria

The mosquitos are active at night

Malaria is caused by infection with the Plasmodium parasite, which is transmitted by a bite of the Anophelis mosquitos. Like many other mosquitoes this insect is active between sunset and sunrise. There are different degrees of malaria that have a mild to severe disease course. The first symptoms, including fever, chills, muscle pain and headaches appear 10 to 14 days after the infection.

Malaria Breaks Down Red Blood Cells

The parasite attacks the red blood cells and destroys the cells or infects them. The break down of red blood cells causes the bodys organs and tissues to not get enough oxygen.  When left untreated it causes serious health problems or even death. The symptoms usually come in attacks of four to eight hours, which reoccur regularly after a few days. Malaria can be deadly but is preventable and treatable with medication.

Only Female Mosquitos Transmit Malaria

The malaria parasite is only transmitted through the bite of a female mosquito that is infected with it. Mosquitoes generally live on plant sap. When a female mosquito is fertilized it needs proteins that are in our blood to lay eggs. For this reason, only female mosquitos bite and they are the only ones that transmit the parasite.

Dealiest Disease in Tropical Countries

Every year 627,000 people die from malaria. That equals to one death every minute somewhere in the world.  Countries that have higher poverty levels tend not to be able to provide education and means to prevent the spread of malaria or treat it properly.  The worst part is that € 0.35 is enough to cure a child aged of 1 to 5 years of malaria.

The Following countries have the higest reported cases of malaria reported:

  1. The Republic if the Congo
  2. Equatorial Guinea
  3. Ethiopia
  4. Eritrea
  5. Nigeria
  6. Sierra Leone

Higher Risk for Children

Children are at special risk of infection. Their immune system is not yet fully developed, causing the increase of risk of a severe form of malaria. It is the most serious disease that can be contracted by children traveling. In Africa, malaria is even the number one cause of death amongst children. After the appearance of the first flu-like symptoms, the disease can develop in a short time to a very severe form. Children are therefore at greater risk of complications such as shock, coma or even death.

Are There Malaria Risk in the UK?

1500 people each year in the UK get infected with this disease from traveling abroad reports the NHS. Currently mosquitos carrying the plasmodium parasite or malaria do not exist in the UK. it Takes 7-18 days before any symptoms begin to show if you are bitten from an infected mosquito, many people dont seek immediate treatment.  They think symptoms are likely food or airplane related. It is imprtant to understand the symptoms and let a doctor decide your diagnosis.

Symptoms and Incubation

Any suspicion of being bitten by an infected malaria mosquito, seek immediate treatment as soon as possible. After a sting from a mosquito, the parasites move to the liver, where they multiply. After 5-18 days, the parasites are released from the liver and penetrate the red blood cells. From that moment on disease symptoms can appear. Eventually the red blood cells burst, after which the parasites penetrate new blood cells and repeat the cycle. This causes a multiplication of the parasites and the symptoms become more severe.

Early Diagnosis

Simple malaria is treated with a cure of medication of three days. In advanced or severe malaria cases, hospitalization is often necessary. See a doctor if you have been to an area where malaria is active and if you suffer flu-like symptoms.