By NewsDesk  @bactiman63

The Ukraine Ministry of Health reported that a imported case of malaria has turned out to be fatal.

Image/Robert Herriman

The patient was a 44-year-old man from Kharkiv who returned from Equatorial Guinea.

During his stay in this country he did not suffer from malaria, but he noted repeated mosquito bites.

The patient reported that he felt symptoms upon returning to Ukraine. However, he sought medical help only after 10 days. Doctors diagnosed malaria, the same day a laboratory test confirmed the diagnosis. Unfortunately, the patient’s condition was already very serious and taking antimalarial tablets was impossible. The man could not be saved.

All travelers should remember that the early manifestations of malaria are similar to the first signs of other diseases. Usually, the first symptoms of malaria – fever, headache, heavy sweating, weakness – appear 10-15 days after the bite of an infected mosquito. They may be mild, making it difficult to detect malaria.

Treatment should be started within the first 24 hours after the onset of symptoms, otherwise malaria can develop into a serious illness and end in death. Children with severe malaria often develop severe anemia, respiratory failure, or cerebral malaria. In adults, several organs are often affected.

The risk of contracting malaria and developing a serious illness is much higher in migrants and travelers who do not have immunity, as well as in infants, children under the age of five, pregnant women and people living with HIV / AIDS. Malaria transmission occurs in 91 countries around the world, mainly in Africa, Asia, South and North America. In Ukraine, the transmission of malaria by mosquitoes does not occur and currently all registered cases of the disease are imported.

If you experience flu or fever while traveling or within a year of returning from a malaria transmission country, see your doctor immediately and report your travel history.

Today, malaria can be prevented:

  • wear clothes that cover the body as much as possible;
  • use repellents – insect repellents, including mosquitoes;
  • stay in rooms where mosquito nets treated with a long-acting insecticide are installed;
  • take antimalarial drugs (medicines to prevent malaria) or chemoprophylaxis (depending on the country you are traveling to and should be started a few weeks before the trip).