What is malaria?

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Malaria is a serious and infectious disease that causes high fevers and chills among humans. This condition is caused by a mosquito bite. Only the female Anopheles type of mosquito is said to be the carrier of malaria. If one infected person is bitten by this particular mosquito for example, another person may also get malaria if he/she is also bitten. Malaria is a common health concern in countries with tropical climates. Various countries around Asia and Africa for example are the worst hit when it comes to malaria infections.

The problem with malaria is that the symptoms are serious and severe. Fever is often very high along with shivering and flu-like symptoms. There are also cases wherein patients complain of muscle aches and pains. Other symptoms of malaria include diarrhea, nausea, and body malaise. In worst cases of malaria, the infection may spread to vital organs like the lungs, heart, kidneys, and even the brain. Some people with malaria will also get jaundice because of the affectation on the red blood cells. In these serious infections, patients may actually die from the disease.

Most malaria cases can be prevented through proper vaccination. For people who wish to travel to countries that are known to have malaria epidemics in the past, they are often advised to take precautions before the actual travel. Various preventive drugs are available to fight mosquito bites and possible malaria infection. No vaccine still exists for malaria but medicines available for malaria are also considered highly effective in terms of treating the disease. The problem with malaria is that symptoms may not become apparent immediately. Some people get symptoms a week after infection by the anopheles mosquito while others may have them after several months or even a year later. The main idea for malaria management is that people get immediate treatment once the symptoms appear. This is especially applicable for people who live in areas where malaria is prevalent and for those who have recently visited these areas.

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