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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 134-138

Clinical presentation of congenital malaria at the Lagos University teaching hospital

1 Department of Paediatrics, Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Lagos, Nigeria
2 Department of Paediatrics, Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Kano, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
FEA Lesi
Department of Paediatrics, Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Lagos
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 20499743

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Background: Congenital malaria has been increasingly documented in endemic regions. It is important to recognize those clinical features that are due to congenital malaria, which if undetected, might worsen the morbidity of the newborn. The aim of this study was to document the clinical presentation of neonates with congenital malaria born at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital and followed up for 28 days. Methods: A total of 100 consecutive mothers and their newborns were recruited between August and October 2002 (during the rainy season) from the labour ward and followed up from birth to 28 days of age. Blood films from the placentae and babies were stained with Giemsa stain within 24 hours of collection. All parasitaemic babies that became symptomatic were screened for sepsis using acute phase responses and cultures. All data were entered into a prepared proforma. Symptoms were attributed to malaria when sepsis screening was negative. Results: Congenital malaria was documented in 13.6% of babies at delivery. Jaundice, irritability and poor feeding were most common symptoms associated with congenital malaria. Irritability and poor feeding had positive predictive values (PPV) of 100% on Day14. Conclusion: Babies who present with poor feeding and irritability on Day 14 of life should be screened for malaria in addition to the routine investigations for neonatal sepsis.

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