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Private MD Lab Services offer the following parasite blood examination to diagnose malaria:
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Malaria is a serious, sometimes fatal infection of red blood cells.
Four types of parasites called Plasmodium cause malaria. The parasites are carried by mosquitoes. When a mosquito bites an infected person, parasites in the person's blood are picked up by the mosquito. After the parasites grow in the mosquito for a week or more, the parasites can enter your blood if the mosquito bites you. The parasites then enter your liver, where they grow and multiply.
After a time, the parasites leave the liver and enter red blood cells. This may take just a few days or as long as several months. The parasites make more parasites in the red cells until they become swollen and burst. This releases new parasites into the bloodstream. The new parasites then infect more red blood cells. While the parasites are in the liver, you may not feel sick, but when the parasites have infected your blood cells, you begin to have symptoms.
Malaria risk is high in over 90 countries with tropical climates, including the following areas:
Symptoms of malaria include:
In addition, if you have the type of malaria caused by the plasmodium falciparum parasite, you may have other severe symptoms:
If you become ill with a fever or flulike illness after traveling in a malaria risk area within the past year, see your health care provider right away. Tell your provider that you have been traveling in a malaria risk area. Your provider will review your medical history and examine you. You will have blood tests to look for the parasites.
Malaria can be cured with prescription drugs. The type of drugs and length of treatment depend on which kind of malaria you have, your age, and how ill you are.
With proper treatment, symptoms of malaria usually go away quickly, with a cure within 2 weeks. Without proper treatment, malaria can be fatal, or symptoms can keep coming back for many years.
After repeated exposure, you may become partly immune. This means you may not get as sick when you are infected. You cannot become completely immune to malaria.
The infection may cause a fever every 12 to 48 hours. Each new generation of parasites causes a fever when they leave the red blood cells they have infected. The different types of parasites grow at different rates, so the time between fevers depends on the type of malarial infection you have. Once you learn how often you have fevers, you can predict when you're going to feel sick again. Make sure that at these times you are not alone, you have medicine for fever, and you drink lots of fluids so that you do not become dehydrated. You may feel well between attacks.
If you are traveling to a malaria risk area: