Want to know what it’s like to have malaria?


I can tell you from my personal experience
about the disease of malaria because I’ve been raised in India. And I got this disease
when I was a young child for about seven times, and it was always during summertime because
that’s when the mosquitoes are there in the environment and that’s where you are more
prone to the disease. Malaria, it can have two types, so if you’re
travelling to let’s say, Southeast Asia, Indian subcontinent, there is a particular
species which is called Plasmodium vivax and there the people get very, very high fever.
So the main symptoms are that they get very high fever, chills and they start to feel
very sick. Whereas in Africa they have a similar thing but it is more deadly because they are
affected in their brain and that can lead to death. So the two types of malaria are
quite different. One is carried by Plasmodium vivax in the Southeast Asia, and in Africa
its Plasmodium falciparum and that’s the one which kills the maximum number of people over
the year. Malaria, when it starts, you start to feel
a chill and it looks like as if you’ve got flu, but then the temperature goes so up that
you can even go into coma. And also you feel very sick, you don’t feel like eating, you
have very high fever and you start to vomit. But the symptoms can vary from different people.
If they are very malnourished and they are not very strong in their immune system, they
can get very sick very quickly and it can become lethal because your liver is affected,
you become very anaemic and you’re not able to take proper food and nourishment. It affects the red blood cells, which is the
main blood that we have, and because if your red blood cells are affected you cannot breathe
very well, because red blood cells are the ones which carry the protein which is called
haemoglobin and globin is the one which carries the iron. So when you breathe in, all the
energy that you get is through breathing and this haemoglobin which is in the red blood
cells and if the red blood cells are destroyed, you cannot have any more energy or you cannot
breathe very well. When the mosquito bites, it’s normally,
it’s a very… there is a latent period where you don’t know the disease but that
you have got the disease because the parasite goes in the liver and infects the liver cells
and they make huge numbers. But when they come out in the blood there are millions which
are attacking the red blood cells. So in, in a minute all the red blood cells can be
infected by these parasites. So within three days of incubation after that, once they are
released in the blood, all the red blood cells get affected and that’s where you feel the
chill, or that’s where the pathology of the disease is and then it is very difficult,
because there are millions in numbers, to control them. So when you take a tablet it
kills all those parasites and the tablets that we are given is mainly as a precaution
so that no parasite can grow inside your body while you are in these areas.

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