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Malarial Screen


Malarial Screen
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Malaria is a mosquito-borne infectious disease of humans caused by eukaryotic protists of the genus Plasmodium. It is widespread in tropical and subtropical regions, including much of Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and the Americas. In humans malaria is caused by P. falciparum, P. malariae, P. ovale, P. vivax and P. knowlesi. Consequences of severe malaria include coma and death if untreated—young children and pregnant women are especially vulnerable. Splenomegaly (enlarged spleen), severe headache, cerebral ischemia, hepatomegaly (enlarged liver), hypoglycemia, and hemoglobinuria with renal failure may occur. The most preferred, and reliable diagnosis of malaria is microscopic examination of blood films because each of the four major parasite species has distinguishing characteristics. Other test methods include antigen tests, and PCR


Rapid Diagnostic Test is carried out using Immunochromagraphic membrane assay for presence of Malarial antigen which is 100% sensitive to P.falciparum.
Follwed by Thick and thin blood films examination for species identification and for P. falciparum parasitaemia is reported. All positive malaria are sent to malaria reference laboratory for PCR to identify and confirm the malarial species

Vessels and Containers:

Purple EDTA (4.5ml)


EDTA sample -when morethan 24hrs old, may not useful in accurately identifying the parasite as cells disintegrate with prolonged storage in EDTA

How result is reported:

Reported as Positive and the species is indicated if parasite antigen is present
Reported as Negative if parasite antigen is not present.
Blood Film:
Thick film
reported as 'malarial parasites seen' or 'malarial parasites not present' depending on the presence of Malarial parasite
Thin film
If no parasites present then reported as 'No malaraial parasites seen'
If malarial parasites present then the stage of the parasites (trophozoite, gametocyte etc.,) and if the parasite is P.falciparum then the parasitaemia is also reported.

Important Information:

When requesting Malarial screen, indicate:
Country/countries travelled
prophylaxis taken

Reference Lab Description:

HPA Malaria Reference Laboratory London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine