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Age as a risk factor for severe manifestations and fatal outcome of falciparum malaria in European patients: Observations from TropNetEurop and SIMPID surveillance data

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Matthias Schmid


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Previous studies have indicated that age is a risk factor for severe falciparum malaria in nonimmune patients. The objectives of this study were to reevaluate previous findings with a larger sample and to find out how strongly clinical outcomes for elderly patients differ from those for younger patients. Results of adjusted analyses indicated that the risks of death due to falciparum malaria, of experiencing cerebral or severe disease in general, and of hospitalization increased significantly with each decade of life. The case-fatality rate was almost 6 times greater among elderly patients than among younger patients, and cerebral complications occurred 3 times more often among elderly patients. Antimalarial chemoprophylaxis was significantly associated with a lower case-fatality rate and a lower frequency of cerebral complications. Women were more susceptible to cerebral complications than were men. Our study provides evidence that falciparum malaria is more serious in older patients and demonstrates that clinical surveillance networks are capable of providing quality data for investigation of rare events or diseases.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Muhlberger N, Jelinek T, Behrens RH, Gjorup I, Coulaud JP, Clerinx J, Puente S, Burchard G, Gascon J, Grobusch MP, Weitzel T, Zoller T, Kollaritsch H, Beran J, Iversen J, Hatz C, Schmid ML, Bjorkman A, Fleischer K, Bisoffi Z, Guggemos W, Knobloch J, Matteelli A, Schulze MH, Laferl H, Kapaun A, McWhinney P, Lopez-Velez R, Fatkenheuer G, Kern P, Zieger BW, Kotlowski A, Fry G, Cuadros J, Myrvang B, TropNetEurop Surveillance Network, SIMPID Surveillance Network

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Clinical Infectious Diseases

Year: 2003

Volume: 36

Issue: 8

Pages: 990-995

ISSN (print): 1058-4838

ISSN (electronic): 1537-6591

Publisher: Oxford University Press


DOI: 10.1086/374224


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