What is malaria?
Malaria is caused by the plasmodium parasite. There are six species of this parasite, which, when infected, all give a different but characteristic pattern of symptoms. On average, symptoms begin ten to 14 days after infection. In some cases, the parasites can remain inactive in the liver for months to years before becoming active again. Malaria often starts with a flu-like feeling followed by fever, chills, muscle aches and headache. Typical of malaria are recurrent fever attacks. Depending on the parasite a person is infected with, these fever attacks occur every 48 or 72 hours.
How do you get malaria?
The malaria parasite is not transmitted directly from person to person, but is transmitted by the Anopheles mosquito. This mosquito transmits the parasites through mosquito bites and is active between sunset and sunrise.
What can you do to prevent malaria?
You can protect yourself from malaria in several ways. The most important thing is to take the proper anti-mosquito measures. This is especially important in the evening and at night, when mosquitoes are active. These include wearing clothing that covers you, applying a mosquito repellent such as DEET and sleeping under an (impregnated) mosquito net. Besides these measures, depending on your destination and the duration of your trip, it is sometimes necessary to take malaria pills. We will be happy to give you personal advice based on your destination and health.
When do I need malaria pills?
Malaria is more common in some areas than others. Depending on your travel destination and health, you will be given a prescription for malaria tablets. There is no vaccination against malaria. In most of Asia and South America, emergency treatment is sufficient. This means taking malaria tablets with you so that you can treat yourself for malaria if you become sick. In most of Africa, we recommend a preventive treatment with malaria tablets. This means that you take malaria tablets before you get sick. That way, you prevent getting sick with malaria.
There are several types of malaria tablets. Together, we will look at your health and travel plans to determine which tablets are best suited for you.
What are the side effects of malaria pills?
Malaria pills can cause side effects. The exact side effects depend on the tablets you have been prescribed. We will discuss this with you during your appointment at Vaccinatiecentrum.nl.
What do malaria pills cost?
If you have (Dutch) supplementary healthcare insurance, the cost of malaria pills is in most cases covered by your health insurance. For more information on costs, please visit our prices page.