Latin America must be prepared for the "Super Malaria"

The alarming spread of the dangerous disease in South East Asia is creating a serious concern for health organizations

Latin America must be prepared for the  

Leer en Español: Latinoamérica tiene que estar preparada para la "Súper Malaria"

A new mutation of malaria is spreading rapidly throughout South East Asia. The outbreak was registered in Cambodia, but quickly spread to Thailand, Laos, and southern Vietnam.

Some researchers published, in the scientific newspaper “The Lancet Infectious Disease”, their concerns and described it as "one of the greatest threats to the control and elimination of malaria". Experts are alarmed because this "type" of disease cannot be killed with common anti-malaria drugs and treatments. The parasite has now mutated and is artemisinin-resistant, the main medicine used.

The artemisinin is often administered as a first-line drug to cure the malaria. It is one of the main factors of the reduction of the infection around the world.

Scientists are afraid of a further spread of this strand of super malaria. One of the main concern is to avoid it reaching Africa, where 90% of the cases of malaria occur and end in death. Their healthcare system is known to be deficient and it can be even harder to avoid a pandemic.

Health authorities in Latin America are showing concern due to the fact that there are various mosquitos similar to the one that carries the disease in the region. The Aedes Aegypti and the malaria ridden bug are both found in tropical climates, such as South East Asia, Africa, and Latin America. The parasite found within the area was the one to blame for the spread of Dengue and Zika.

 

Latin American Post | Santiago Gómez Hernández 

Copy edited by Susana Cicchetto

 

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