- Bacterial Infections 101 Pictures Slideshow
- Take the Tummy Trouble Quiz
- Hepatitis C Slideshow Pictures
- Patient Comments: Malaria - Symptoms
- Patient Comments: Malaria - Causes
- Malaria facts
- What is malaria?
- Is malaria contagious?
- What causes malaria?
- What are risk factors for malaria? Is it possible to prevent malaria?
- What are malaria symptoms and signs?
- How do physicians diagnose malaria?
- What is the treatment for malaria?
- What is the prognosis of malaria?
- Is there a malaria vaccine?
- Can malaria reoccur after treatment?
Quick GuideTravel Health: Vaccines & Preventing Diseases Abroad
What are malaria symptoms and signs?
Malaria has a wide spectrum of symptoms. After the bite by the infected mosquito occurs, it can take between seven and 30 days before symptoms start.
Malaria is classified as uncomplicated or complicated (severe).
The most common symptoms are
The classic description of a malaria attack (which is rarely observed), would be a six- to 12-hour period of cold and shivering alternating with fever and headaches and then a stage of sweating and tiredness (sometimes divided into the cold and hot stage).
As these symptoms are very nonspecific, it is important to evaluate if the patient has risk factors for malaria (usual travel in endemic areas).
Complicated or severe malaria
This occurs when different body systems are affected by malaria.
- Severe anemia (due to destruction of red blood cells)
- Kidney failure
- Cerebral malaria -- seizures, unconsciousness, abnormal behavior, or confusion
- Cardiovascular collapse
- Low blood sugar (in pregnant women after treatment with quinine)