Malaria: A Life-threatening Disease You Should Be Mindful Of

What is Malaria?

Malaria is a life-threatening disease that is caused by an infected female mosquito. When bitten by this mosquito, it transmits parasites into the bloodstream.
The parasites spread into the body and become mature. It enters the bloodstream and begins to infect the red blood cells. When the red blood cells get infected, it multiplies causing the cells to burst up. Such parasites can be found in tropical and subtropical climates. They find it comfortable to dwell in i.e swampy land, unused swimming pools, leaky water pipes, open water, and open ditches.

Over 241 million cases of malaria were discovered in the year 2020. Six hundred and twenty-seven thousand (627,000) deaths were recorded in that same year.  The region with the highest rate of malaria was the African region. In Africa, they recorded 95% of malaria cases and 96% of deaths. Six countries on the top list in the Africa region were:

  • Nigeria
  • Congo
  • Uganda
  • Mozambique
  • Angola
  • Burkina Faso
Types of Malaria Parasites

Below are the four kinds of malaria parasites that can infect humans and cause illness:

  1. Plasmodium Malaria
  2. P. Ovale
  3. Plasmodium Vivax
  4. P. Falciparum

Studies have shown that Plasmodium falciparum causes more severe malaria. There is a higher risk of death in those who have it. Plasmodium Vivax also causes a threat to life just like plasmodium falciparum.

Can malaria be transmitted?

Yes, malaria can be transmitted. It can be through blood transfusion, organ transplant, and shared syringes or needles. A pregnant woman with malaria can pass the disease to her child during childbirth.

Common Malaria Symptoms

Not all malaria parasites that get into the body will develop symptoms. Some of them can be dormant for a long period of time before it is noticed. But there are common symptoms that develop within 7-30 days or more:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Bloody stools
  • Sweating profusely
  • Weakness
  • Body pain
  • Yellowish eyes
Complicated Malaria Symptoms

Malaria can become complicated when 5% of red blood cells are affected by the parasite. When the parasite is in a dormant stage, there is no disease activity in this stage. At this stage, malaria will disappear for a period of time but will reactivate later. Below are complicated symptoms:

  • Blood clotting
  • Seizures
  • Severe anemia
  • Kidney failure
  • Liver failure
  • Low blood pressure
  • Dehydration
  • Pulmonary edema
  • Respiratory distress
  • Coma
Malaria Treatment

It is advisable to visit a doctor or a healthcare professional if you notice symptoms of malaria. The answers you give will determine if they should run a blood test on you. Such tests can include RDT(rapid diagnostic testing) for parasites, a blood count test for anemia, and a microscopic examination of blood cells. Some treatments last 3 days and it may vary depending on the kind of:

  • plasmodium that caused malaria
  • if the person took antimalaria drugs before
  • how severe the symptoms are
  • and if the person is pregnant.

Treatments include:

1. Medications

Malaria drugs can be recommended by your doctor to help eliminate the parasite from the bloodstream. i.e chloroquine, hydroxychloroquine, artemisinin, primaquine etc.

2. Hospitalization

Some persons with severe symptoms will be hospitalized for proper treatment.

3. Intensive Care

In some cases when malaria becomes complicated, the doctor will place them in ICU(intensive care unit) to help them recover.

4. Herbs

Many choose to take natural herbal teas to eliminate all kinds of plasmodium in their body system. In the past and recent years, many individuals have come to appreciate the effectiveness of herbal teas. They’ve seen how it cures almost all ailments you could think of. Teas like GREATEA Anti-Malaria Herbal TeaEver Golden Anti – Typhoid & Malaria TeaNozie Green TeaLoyd Green Tea with Lemon & Lemongrass , GOTEA Organic Lemon Grass Peppermint Tea are teas that some persons have taken to prevent and cure malaria.

Without treatment, symptoms may last from 2 to 24 weeks and that can cause a risk to a person’s life. Malaria is a critical disease that can be life-threatening. Immediate treatment is best recommended for quick recovery.


Steps to take to prevent malaria:

  • prevent mosquito bites – don’t expose your body to mosquitos, use insectifuge in your home and surroundings.
  • take anti-malaria medications to prevent malaria.
  • get proper treatment if you noticed malaria symptoms.
  • If you are planning to go on a trip to an area where malaria is common, take anti-malaria drugs along with you before leaving. Or you can take it before you leave.

A vaccine has been made available to prevent malaria. It is approved for both young and old especially in the Sub-Saharan Africa region where infection with Plasmodium falciparum is very common. Health experts have administered over 2.3 million doses with positive results. For children under the age of 5 years, it offers 30% protection from severe malaria after four doses. It saves one life among 200 children vaccinated.

Although the vaccine saves life but is not 100% effective.


Malaria is life-threatening when a person receives a bite from an infected female mosquito that carries a parasite known as plasmodium. As a result, the parasites get into the liver which causes infection to the blood cells. Some of these parasites stay in the liver until later which results in the reoccurrence of malaria.

Malaria can affect vital body organs like kidneys, liver, red blood cells, etc and this is when the symptoms get complicated. Other common symptoms are fever, weakness, vomiting, etc. These symptoms may disappear after some days but reappear again weeks or months later.

The earlier you treat malaria the higher your chances of not being a victim of plasmodium falciparum.



Written by Mary E. Linus

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