Lighting Learning: Malaria

Lighting Learning: Malaria

“Malaria should be considered in any febrile or unwell patient who has visited endemic areas.”
— advice is based on local guidelines & procedures
 
 

What?

Infection with one of five Plasmodium species: falciparum, vivax, ovale, malariae, knowlesi
 

Initial symptoms are nonspecific:

  • Chills

  • Malaise

  • Fatigue

  • Sweating

  • Headache

  • Cough

  • Nausea

  • Vomiting

  • Abdominal pain

  • Diarrhoea

  • Arthralgia

  • Myalgia

Severe features:

  • Altered GCS/seizures

  • Respiratory distress or ARDS

  • Shock

  • Metabolic acidosis

  • Renal failure/heamoglobinuria

  • Hepatic failure

  • Coagulopathy +/- DIC

  • Severe anemia or massive intravascular haemolysis

  • Hypoglycemia

  • High parasite count

 

Why?

Malaria should be considered in any febrile or unwell patient who has visited endemic areas.

Most cases present within 3 months of return, but it can be longer.

Remember to ask a travel history that extends at least this far back!

Mortality (in the UK) is roughly 1%. A delay in recognition and treatment increases mortality and complications.

It is also important to consider other infections in anyone who has travelled and consider isolation until the diagnosis is confirmed.

Further Reading

Sim Blog: Sickle Cell Crisis

Sim Blog: Sickle Cell Crisis

#RCEM16Beach Posters

#RCEM16Beach Posters