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Malaria - a Biological Problem

Updated on September 29, 2017

Malaria Cases throughout the World

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What is Malaria?

Malaria is a disease spread by the mosquito affecting humans and other animals (like sparrow) caused by Plasmodium. It causes symptoms like fever, tiredness, vomiting and headaches etc. In some cases it can also causes yellow skin, seizure, coma and death. Its symptoms begin ten to fifteen days after a mosquito bite.

The most commonly mosquito that spreads malaria is infected female Anopheles.The plasmodim is transferred to the blood of victim body when it bite an animal or human.

In the lever they mature and reproduce. The risk of malaria can be deduced by using the mosquito nets and insect repellents, or with mosquito control measure like spraying insecticides and draining standing water.

Signs and Symptoms

The signs of the malaria begins after 8-25 days after infection. However the Symptoms can begin some time after if the victim take medications. Malaria symptoms are similar to flu-like symptoms.

The symptoms include:

1.Headache

2.Fever

3.Shivering

4.Joint Pain

5.Vomiting

6.Hemolytic Anemia

7.Jaundice

8.Hemoglobin in urine

9.Retinal Damage and convulsions

The common symptom of malaria is proxysm --- An occurance of sudden coldness followed by shivering and then fever and sweating.

Symptoms of falciparum malaria arise 9-30 days after a mosquito bite off.


Cause

Malaria is caused by the Plasmodium Parasite.

Malarial Parasites belongs to genus Plasmodium. It is caused in humans by P.falciparum, P.Malariae, P.ovale, P.vivax and P.knowlesi. P.falciparum is the most abundant (~75%). P.vivax (~20%). P.falciparum cause the majority of deaths.

Preventions

Methods used to prevent malaria includes medications, mosquito elimination and prevention of mosquito bites (i.e use of lotion). Prevention of the malaria will be more cost effective than the treatment of the disease but the initial cure for the malaria is out of cost of many people.The elimination programmes for malaria is different in many countries.

Insecticide-treated mosquito nets and indoor residual spraying has shown highly effective in preventing malaria. Mosquito nets help to keep away mosquito from the people. Mosquito nets are treated with insecticides and it is 70% more effective as compared to nets without insecticies.

Residual indoor spraying is also used to keep mosquitos away. Insecticides are sprayed on the walls when the mosquito feeds on the blood it flies to the nearest surface for digestion, so the resting mosquitos can be killed.

There are many more other methods to prevent increasing mosquito population: standing water have larva of mosquito, when the water is drained the larva is prevented from developing into a mosquito and it cycle ends here. Adding substances to the water is another method to stop mosquito from developing into a mosquito. Electronic mosquitos repellant devices make high frequency sounds that are supposed to keep female mosquitos away.

Medications:


There are different type of drugs to stop the spread of plasmodium in the human body. The people who travel from malaria safe area to the place where malaria exist take drugs one to two weeks before arriving and continue it for several weeks.

During Pregnancy the prevention for malaria have found to improve the weight of baby and decrease the risk of anemia in the mother.

How cure for Malaria become possible?

According to one of the legend an Indian was lost in the Jungles of Andes. He was burning from fever with Malaria. He set beside a pool and notice the bark of cinchona tree near had fallen to the pool. It was believed that the tree is poisonous but the man was so thirsty that he drink that water. He found himself to be fully recovered. A cure for malaria was thus born. The cinchona tree, also known as quina quina, gives the drug quinine, which has been used for the cure of malaria.

Treatment

Malaria is treated with the antimalarial medications depends upon the severity of the disease. Simple malaria can be treated with oral medications. Most effective drug for P.falciparum is artimisinins with additional antimalarial amodiaquine, lumifantrine etc.

WHO recommends quinine plus clindamycin in the 1st trimester and ACT in the 2nd and 3rd trimester. Infection with P.vivax, P.ovale or P.malariae does not require hospitalization.

Severe malaria is caused by P.falciparum is treated with intravenous use of anti malarial drugs.

Cerebral malaria is the severe and complicated malaria with the worst neurological symptoms and is treated with Quinine in the children.

History

The word malaria originated from latin name "mala" meaning bad "aria" mean air.

Malaria was considered to be a disease caused by the marshy water. Different scientists at different at different times done research for the treatment of malaria. In the year 1800, Laveran a french army surgeon doctor notice parasite inside the blood of a malarial patient therefore he proposed malria is caused by the organism, for the 1st time a protist was found as disease causing.

In April 1884 a scottish physician Sir Ronald Ross work on the life cycle of parasite in the mosquito and proved that mosquito is the vector of malaria.

The first effective treatment for malaria come from bark of cinchona which contains quinine. The tree grows on the slopes of Andes in Peru. Quinine become the predominant medication for treatment of malaria to the 1920s while in 1940 chloroquine replaced quinine as the treatment of both simple and complicated malaria.

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    • AshutoshJoshi06 profile image

      Ashutosh Joshi 

      12 months ago from New Delhi, India

      Good Job!!

      Be informed and educate others, that how awareness spread.

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