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How People Are Infected With Malaria

2229 words - 9 pages

According to the Welcome-trust, an organization that is involved in the study and research of Malaria, there are over 120 known species of the genus Plasmodium parasite, but only four of these 120 species infect humans to cause malaria. Humans can be infected by four species of Plasmodium parasites: Plasmodium vivax, Plasmodium malariae, Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium ovale. The main difference between the different species is that the Plasmodium falciparum, can cause severe and life-threatening malaria, while the others cannot “Malaria lifecycle - mosquito stages | Wellcome Trust")
In most cases of malaria the patient feels well and the infection is only detected by a blood test that finds parasites in the blood. This is the most common case of malaria amongst people who have lived through several attacks of malaria and have an established certain degree of immunity to the disease; this is also the case in older children and adults in the most part of Africa on the south of the Sahara. Since immunity is mostly obtained from exposure to Malaria, (Fagan, 2000) infection without severe symptoms is very rare among people with no immunity, such as travelers from a malaria-free area who become infected. An infection with (P. falciparum) Plasmodium falciparum causes simple malaria which although very unpleasant does not pose instant threat to life. The patient usually suffers from persistent fever with characterized by vomiting, vomiting with anemia (low blood hemoglobin) and an overly enlarged spleen. The victim also experiences persistent diarrhea .Symptoms in children may be a bit more severe because as an addition to the above mentioned symptoms children may also suffer rapid breathing, and may experience a continuous cough. ("Four species of Plasmodium | Malaria", Beanland. 2009, p. 1)
The different symptoms between the varying forms of malaria are a result of the structure, subsequent size and shape of the different cells associated with each of the parasites. Of all the malaria parasites that are responsible for Human malaria infections, Plasmodium falciparum (P. falciparum) is the most highly pathogenic and is responsible for severe febrile attack with malignant cycle leading to cerebral malaria and death (Wiser, 2011). This parasite thrives in warm moist environments, and is the major cause of malaria in tropical Africa as well the severe cases of malaria that ravish the great regional epidemics which sometimes occur in Sri Lanka and north-west India. Its reliance on warm and moist tropical climates means it is generally confined to tropical or sub-tropical areas because its growth in the mosquito is significantly retarded when the temperatures fall below 25- 20°C. (Cox-Singh and Singh, 2008)
In the P. falciparum malaria when late schizonts or trophozoites infect erythrocytes,it causes an change in surface causing the erythrocytes to stick to the endothelial cells in alining the tissues. This sticking property often...

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