Each year, millions of US residents travel to countries where malaria is present, with approximately 2,000 cases diagnosed in returning travelers. Based on the risk assessment for each destination, specific malaria prevention interventions should be used by travelers.
Malaria is a disease caused by a parasite that spreads to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito, according to the US CDC.
Along with vaccines and drugs that offer protection against infectious mosquitoes, insecticide-treated bed nets have been deployed across Africa.
A long term to study of Early-life malaria control published by the New England Journal of Medicine on February 3, 2022, found that insecticide-treated mosquito nets protect people against malaria-carrying mosquitoes.
And that survival advantage lasted for decades.
These researchers used data from a 22-year prospective cohort study in rural southern Tanzania that recruited 6,706 children from 1998 to 2003.
According to community outreach visit reports in early life, about 25% of children have never slept under an insecticide-treated mosquito net, 50% have slept under an insecticide-treated mosquito net from time to time, and the remaining quarter have always slept under an insecticide-treated mosquito net. impregnated with insecticide.
Participants who reported using insecticide-treated nets at half or more early visits had a relative risk of death of 0.57 (95% confidence interval [CI]0.45 to 0.72) compared to those who would have used insecticide-treated mosquito nets at less than half of the visits.
The corresponding hazard ratio from five years of age to adulthood was 0.93 (95% CI, 0.58 to 1.49).
“Although our study does not include any direct measures of immune function, one could argue that survival to adulthood in a malaria-endemic area is itself a reflection of functional immunity,” wrote these researchers.
For additional disclosures, Dr. Fink can be contacted at [email protected].
In sub-Saharan Africa, most malaria cases are caused by Plasmodium falciparum infection in young children, confirms the CDC.
In this region, during 2020there have been an estimated 228 million cases and 602,000 deaths from malaria, with 80% of deaths occurring in children under five.
If malaria prevention medication is needed, the Malaria Information from Country table lists options recommended by the CDC.
In addition, a new vaccine could offer appropriate protection.
On October 6, 2021, the World Health Organization recommended the RTS,S malaria vaccine for sub-Saharan Africa and other areas with moderate to high malaria transmission.
the Mosquirix RTS, S/AS01 The malaria vaccine is a recombinant vaccine composed of the circumsporozoite protein of P. falciparum from the pre-erythrocytic stage.
Mosquirix aims to trigger the immune system to defend against the early stages when the Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasite enters the bloodstream of the human host through a mosquito bite and infects liver cells.
Early symptoms of malaria resemble those of the flu, including fever, chills, sweating, headache, vomiting, and body aches. However, malaria can quickly progress to severe illness and death without prompt diagnosis and treatment, confirms the CDC.
For more information on malaria vaccines, please visit this webpage.