Wednesday, April 26, 2017
Malaria hospitalizations in US more common.
Malaria hospitalizations in US more common than realized. A new study has shown that Malaria hospitalizations in the United States are more common than previously thought, possibly due to increased travel to regions where the disease is endemic. The study published in in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, suggests that as more infected travelers return to the U.S., clinicians must develop strategies to combat the potentially fatal disease. It appears more and more Americans are traveling to areas where malaria is common and many of them are not taking preventive measures, such as using anti-malarial preventive medications and mosquito repellents, even though they are very effective at preventing infections. The researchers searched hospital records in the Nationwide Inpatient Sample database for malaria-related hospitalizations from 2000 to 2014. They estimated that there were 22,029 malaria hospitalizations in the U.S., with an average of 1,469 cases per year, during that period. Men accounted for about 60% of patients with malaria. Blacks made up 52.5% of patients, whites 24%, Hispanics 6.3%, Asians and Pacific Islanders 5.9% and Native Americans 0.9%. The disease-causing species was known in 52.9% of cases. Plasmodium falciparum — which is known to cause a strong majority of severe and fatal cases — accounted for 72.9% of those. An estimated 4,823 (22%) cases were deemed severe malaria. The most common complication was renal failure (9.6%), followed by severe anemia (7.2%), cerebral malaria (4.3%), acute respiratory distress syndrome (4.1%) and jaundice (3.7%). One hundred eighty-two (0.8%) patients died in the hospital. more