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Malaria: Deadly Disease In Tourists

Malaria: Deadly Disease In Tourists

(ePharmaNews) - A new study warned from the dangerous visit of the elderly to countries where "Malaria" is prevalent, and mentioned also that the disease becomes highly fatal when it selects its victims from the tourists, especially the elderly, which stresses the importance of the necessary medical precautions by people who wish to spend their vacations in countries affected by the disease.

The study, published in the online version of BMJ, concluded that "Malaria" becomes deadly significantly when tourists get infected, especially those over the age of sixty-fife , as they are more likely to die by nearly ten folds compared to youth between the ages of eighteen and thirty five.

The researchers based their study on the data included about twenty-five thousand tourists from the citizens of the United Kingdom, all got malaria during their tourism travels, and they compared the fatality cases with cases that did not cause death, and found that the rate of death among tourists due to malaria has the top rate when returning from "Gambia" and the countries of "West Africa" in the winter.

In an attempt to understand why malaria is fatal to tourists, the researchers compared death rates between tourists and the people of African descent who traveled to Africa to visit family and friends, they found that tourists are more likely to die by nearly nine folds compared to persons with African origins, and despite the fact that the majority of malaria cases in the UK affect people who are descended from Africa, the risk of death among this group is relatively small. The authors explain, however, that early exposure to malaria during their childhood and before they left their countries give them more immunity from this disease , and their knowledge of malaria makes them more able to pay attention to symptoms in cases of infection, therefore they might seek medical help sooner than others.

According to the study, the risk of death by malaria is increasing steadily with age, as no mortality among children under the age of five years was documented, while it reached about 5% in people over the age of sixty-five.

There are about 250 million cases of malaria each year, about a million people of them die, and because of increasing use of Africa as a destination, the incidence of the disease is going up.In Europe, almost half of all cases are from immigrants who came from countries infected with the disease.

The researchers in this study recommend that physicians explain the symptoms of malaria to travelers at risk, more importantly; they should be given the preventive medications. Interestingly, tourists often attribute symptoms of malaria to winter viruses (the flu), which usually delays the diagnosis and the treatment, and this explains that a quarter of deaths due to malaria among tourists are in the month of "December".
"Centers of the Immunizations in Syrian cities diagnose and treat malaria" said Dr. Atef Taweel, the director of malaria control program in Syria in a phone call to ePharmaNews "travelers to infected countries can visit the centers in order to be given the necessary preventive medicines, for free "
As for the disease spread of in Syria, adds Dr. Taweel: "We have no cases of malaria in Syria, and all infection cases come from tourists or Syrians living in Africa for work"

Finally, malaria is transmitted by a mosquito species deployed in endemic countries, the most important symptoms of this disease is the "fever", which may develop into a coma and then death.

اضغط هنا للقراءة باللغة العربية

Prepared by: Basel AlJunaidy
Translated by: Marcell Shehwaro

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