MALARIA IN PREGNANCY: EFFECTS AND PREVENTION

pregnant mother in hospital
/Courtesy
About 10000 women 200000 babies are lost to malaria infection during pregnancy yearly.

Effects of malaria in pregnancy are listed below:


  • Miscarriage
  • Stillbirth (baby died at birth)
  • Low birth weight (birth weight of less than or equal to 2.5Kg)
  • Prematurity
  • Severe anemia in the mother
  • The mother may also not show any symptoms of malaria but the baby may still be affected with low birth weight.

Recommended intervention for malaria prevention and control during pregnancy


Intermittent preventive treatment


All pregnant women in areas of stable (high) malaria transmission should receive at least two doses of intermittent preventive treatment after quickening, the first noted movement of the fetus (WHO, 2004). Currently, the recommended drug for intermittent preventive treatment is sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine, because it is safe for use during pregnancy, effective in women of reproductive age.

Insecticide-treated nets


Insecticide-treated nets should be provided as early in pregnancy as possible to all pregnant women living in malarious areas, including epidemic and disaster situations, according to the perceived need in the locality. Their use should be encouraged for women throughout pregnancy and postpartum (after delivery of the baby)

Effective case treatment of malaria illness and anemia


Effective case management of malaria illness for all pregnant women in malarious areas must be ensured. Haematinics (blood building drugs) for the prevention and treatment of anemia should be given to pregnant women as part of routine antenatal care. Pregnant women should also be screened for anemia, and those with anemia should be managed according to national reproductive health guidelines

Treatment of malaria in pregnancy (WHO recommendation)


First trimester: – quinine plus clindamycin to be given for 7 days (artesunate plus clindamycin for 7 days is indicated if this treatment fails)

The ACT is indicated only if this is the only treatment immediately available, or if treatment with 7-day quinine plus clindamycin fails or if there is an uncertainty of compliance with a 7-day treatment.

Second and third trimesters: – ACT known to be effective in the country/region or artesunate plus clindamycin to be given for 7 days or quinine plus clindamycin to be given for 7 days

lactating women–Lactating women should receive standard antimalarial treatment (including ACTs) except for dapsone, primaquine, and tetracyclines, which should be withheld during lactation

NOTE: Now after some people read the above treatment, they will attempt to become doctors all of a sudden. No! No!! No!!! This article was written mainly for you to have knowledge of how important it is for you to go quickly to a health facility and so you will be able to ask reasonable questions if you or any of your family member is being treated. do not take chances with your life.
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