Malaria is a serious illness that can be fatal if not diagnosed and treated quickly. Pregnant women, babies, young children and the elderly are particularly at risk.
The Plasmodium falciparum parasite causes the most severe malaria symptoms and most deaths.
As complications of severe malaria can occur within hours or days of the first symptoms, it's important to seek urgent medical help as soon as possible.
The destruction of red blood cells by the malaria parasite can cause severe Iron deficiency anaemia .
Anaemia is a condition where the red blood cells are unable to carry enough oxygen to the body's muscles and organs, leaving you feeling drowsy, weak and faint.
In rare cases, malaria can affect the brain. This is known as cerebral malaria, which can cause your brain to swell, sometimes leading to permanent brain damage. It can also cause fits (seizures) or coma .
Other complications that can arise as a result of severe malaria include:
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that pregnant women should avoid travelling to areas where there's a risk of malaria .
If you get malaria while pregnant, you and your baby have an increased risk of developing serious complications, such as:
Visit your GP if you're pregnant and travelling to a high-risk area. They may recommend taking antimalarial medication.
Malaria is a serious tropical disease spread by mosquitoes. If it is not diagnosed and treated promptly, it can be fatal. A single mosquito bite is all it takes for someone to become infected. It's also important to be aware of the symptoms of malaria.
Symptoms of malaria can develop as quickly as seven days after you are bitten by an infected mosquito. Typically, the time between being infected an dwhen symptoms start (incubation period) is 7 to 18 days.
Malaria is caused by the Plasmodium parasite. The parasite can be spread to humans through the bites of infected mosquitoes. There are many different types of plasmodium parasite, but only five types cause malaria in humans.
Antimalarial medication is used to prevent and treat malaria. You should always consider taking antimalarial medicine when travelling to areas where there's a risk of malaria.
Malaria is a serious illness that can be fatal if not diagnosed and treated quickly, particularly in pregnant women, babies, young children and the elderly. The Plasmodium falciparum parasite causes the most severe malaria symptoms and most deaths.
There is a significant risk of getting malaria if you travel to an affected area. It is therefore very important that you take precautions to prevent it. Malaria can often be avoided using the ABCD approach to prevention.