What is malaria?
a serious and sometimes fatal disease caused by a parasite.
Patients with malaria typically are very sick with high
fevers, shaking chills, and flu-like illness. Four kinds of
malaria parasites can infect humans:
Plasmodium falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale,
with any of the malaria species can make a person feel very
ill; infection with
falciparum, if not promptly treated, may be fatal.
Although malaria can be a fatal disease, illness and death
from malaria are largely preventable.
a common disease?
World Health Organization estimates that each year 300-500
million cases of malaria occur and more than 1 million people
die of malaria. About 1,300 cases of malaria are diagnosed in
the United States each year. The vast majority of cases in the
United States are in travelers and immigrants returning from
malaria-risk areas, many from sub-Saharan Africa and the
a serious disease?
Malaria is a leading cause of death and disease worldwide,
especially in developing countries. Most deaths occur in young
children. For example, in Africa, a child dies from malaria
every 30 seconds. Because malaria causes so much illness and
death, the disease is a great drain on many national
economies. Since many countries with malaria are already among
the poorer nations, the disease maintains a vicious cycle of
disease and poverty.
malaria eradicated years ago?
No, not in
all parts of the world. Malaria has been eradicated from many
developed countries with temperate climates. However, the
disease remains a major health problem in many developing
countries, in tropical and subtropical parts of the world.
eradication campaign was started in the 1950s, but it failed
globally because of problems including the resistance of
mosquitoes to insecticides used to kill them, the resistance
of malaria parasites to drugs used to treat them, and
administrative issues. In addition, the eradication campaign
never involved most of Africa, where malaria is the most