Clinical Features:

  • The classical malarial fever has 3 stages.
    Cold stage(Shivering) lasting for 2 hours
    Hot stage lasting for 3-4 hours
    Sweating lasting for 2-4 hours

  • These symptoms occur at regular intervals i.e show periodicity. Periodicity becomes apparent only after the first few days of illness and depending upon the species it could be tertian (every 2nd day for vivax, falciparam and ovale) or quartan (every 4th day for malariae)

  • However, these clinical symptoms are not present in many patients who have the infection.

  • Malaria especially caused by P.falciparam is a very variable diseases mimicking many other conditions such as typhoid, meningitis, gastroenteritis etc., Symptoms due to malaria depend opon the age, immune status, intensity of transmission and prevalent species of malarial parasite.

  • In those living in non-endemic areas, symptoms are very vague because, most of the people are non immune. The disease often presents like flu. Presence of rigors and a rapid increase in temperature should alert the physician to the possibility of malaria.

  • In those living in endemic areas, the attacks are modified by immunity. Fever is often intermittent and may have periodicity.

  • In children fever due to malaria is variable and has no periodicity.It is mostly irregular, may be high and continous or low grade.

  • Othere manifestations in children are pallor, nausea, vomiting, refusal of feeds, lethargy, restlesness, headache, diarrhoea and unproductive cough.

  • Severe forms of malaria are seen with P.falciparam species. Some of the manifestations are severe vomiting and diarrhoea, cerebral malaria, algid malaria, hepato renal syndrome, black water fever and malaria shock lung.

Last Updated on:06/05/2014