Antimalarials Overview

What is malaria?
Malaria is a infectious disease caused by protozoal parasites. It is widespread in tropical and subtropical regions, including parts of the Americas, Asia and Africa. Each year, there are approximately 515 million cases of malaria, killing between one and three million people, the majority of whom are young children in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Malaria is one of the most common infectious diseases and an enormous public health problem. This group of human-pathogenic Plasmodium species is usually referred to as malaria parasites.

Malaria parasites are transmitted by female Anopheles mosquitoes. The parasites multiply within red blood cells, causing symptoms that include symptoms of anemia (light headedness, shortness of breath etc.), as well as other general symptoms such as fever, chills, nausea, flu-like illness, and in severe cases, come and death.

Malaria transmission can be reduced by preventing mosquito bites with mosquito nets and insect repellents, or by mosquito control measures such as spraying insecticides inside houses and draining standing water where mosquitoes lay their eggs.

Although some are under development, no vaccine  is currently available for malaria; preventative drugs must be taken continuously to reduce the risk of infection.

Commonly used antimalarial drugs:
-
 chloroquine (Aralen, Avloclar, Nivaquine, Plaquenil)
- mefloquine (Lariam)
- primaquine
- pyrimethamine (Daraprim)
- quinine

 

Reporting Adverse Drug Reactions (ADRs)
If you have suffered psychiatric adverse reactions please report them. There may be side effects not mentioned on the data sheets. You can request a list of drugs used pre surgery and during surgery. You should be given patient information for all drugs prescribed as you are discharged from hospital.

Please report Adverse Drug Reactions (ADRs) to:

UK Yellow Card Reporting for Patient and Health Professional reports of Adverse Drug Reactions

USA and worldwide to the Food and Drug Administration for Patients and Healthcare Professionals

Universal free, independent drug safety website - Rxisk

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