Beware of malaria, it can cause death

The health director of the Gazipaşa district, Dr. Eşşe Çelik recalled that malaria is an acute febrile illness caused by plasmodium parasites that spread to humans through the bites of infected female anopheles mosquitoes. Çelik stated that this preventable and treatable disease is considered a serious public health problem in low- and middle-income countries, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, saying: “In 2021, about 247 million new cases of malaria were seen and 619 thousand deaths fell due to this infection. It is estimated that 95 percent of all malaria cases and related deaths occur in Africa. Malaria is a feverish, acute disease that causes flu-like symptoms. Symptoms appear 7 to 15 days after the bite of an infected mosquito, but can also occur over a longer period of time.The first symptoms are fever, headache, chills and vomiting.The disease is difficult to define as malaria.Especially if malaria of the P. falciparum species is not treated within 24 hours, exacerbation of the the disease and even death. Early diagnosis and treatment of malaria prevents deaths,” he said.

The disease can be serious

Continuing his explanation by saying, “Malaria can worsen more severely in some patients,” Çelik continued, “Infants and children under 5 years old, pregnant women and patients with HIV/AIDS are at particular risk. Other high-risk groups are those who work or travel to African countries where malaria is common, such as Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Ghana and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and those who do not receive preventive treatment The World Health Organization recommends taking preventive medication before traveling to areas where malaria is common, mosquito nets use when sleeping in these areas and mosquito repellent after sunset, wear long protective clothing to cover arms and legs, and put mosquito nets on the windows.

Türkiye is in danger because of the climate

Health Director of Gazipasa District Dr. Eşşe Çelik said, “As a result of the successful investigations carried out by our ministry, there is no case of malaria in Turkey. However, due to climate change, changes in vector habitats, large population movements, irregular migrants and the increase in the number of people traveling to and from malaria endemic countries, cases of malaria originating from abroad are observed in our country. Turkey is at risk of malaria due to the presence of anopheles mosquitoes and its location in the subtropical climate zone. For this reason, our ministry continues its activities within the framework of the Malaria Elimination Program. Follow-ups of cases of malaria surveillance are carried out, diagnosis and treatment are given as soon as possible. Medicines used in the treatment of malaria are provided by the Ministry of Health and given to patients free of charge. Preventive malaria medicines are available in our country free of charge from the Travel Health Centers of the Ministry of Health, General Directorate of Health for Borders and Coasts.”

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