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Febrile Illness 

Febrile Illness
Chapter:
Febrile Illness
Source:
Acute Care Casebook
Author(s):

Douglas Hofstetter

, Andrea Austin

, and Ryan Maves

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190865412.003.0069

Malaria is a potentially life-threatening infection caused by several protozoa in the Plasmodium genus. Malaria is transmitted through the bite of a female Anopheles mosquito, which serves as the definitive host and vector of the disease. Geographically, malaria is normally found in warm, tropical climates that can support the Anopheles mosquito year-round. In uncomplicated malaria, signs and symptoms are often nonspecific. Due to the ongoing hemolysis, patients classically present with fevers followed by a characteristic paroxysm of chills, high fevers, and malaise. The classic gold standard for the diagnosis of malaria is light microscopy of Giemsa-stained peripheral blood smears. Pharmacotherapy depends on the suspected Plasmodium species, the local patterns of drug susceptibility, and the clinical status of the patient. Chemoprophylaxis is recommended for all individuals traveling to regions with endemic malaria.

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