[GRAPHICAL VERSION] [繁體版] [簡體版] [SEARCH] [SITE MAP] [CONTACT US ]
What is Malaria?
It is caused by a parasite which is transmitted by the bite of mosquitoes in tropical and subtropical areas of the world. The time between the infective bite and the appearance of symptoms varies between 7-30 days. Some may have longer periods up to 10 months. The symptoms of Malaria include sequential chills, fever, sweating, headache, muscle aches, and tiredness. The very serious consequences of the disease (especially with falciparum malaria) are mental disturbances, convulsions and various blood and kidney disorders. These can lead to death sometimes within 24 hours.
How does it spread?
Malaria is spread by the bite of an infective female Anopheles mosquito. The parasite enters the human body while the mosquito is sucking blood.
How can you prevent it?
Avoiding the bite of mosquito is the first line and the best defence against contracting Malaria. You can take the following precautions in preventing mosquito bites:
There are drugs that can be taken for prevention, especially in some high risk areas. The commonly used drugs include chloroquine, proguanil, mefloquine and doxycycline. The choices are based on the particular destinations you are going to visit, the risks as determined by your travelling behaviour and your previous health status. They should only be taken after consulting a doctor. If you decide to take such medication you should start it before the trip, continue throughout the trip and for four more weeks after leaving the malarious area.
If you develop symptoms like those of influenza or a high fever during or after the trip you should consult a doctor immediately. Urgent blood tests may be performed and prompt treatment is vital.
How is it treated?
Treatment includes anti-malarial drugs and various supportive measures. Some infections may require longer treatment to eradicate the parasites completely from the body.
Last revision date: 10 October 2012