Navigation Links
Diagnostic Tests for Malaria Underused in Zambia

Despite improvements in the ability to diagnose malaria, these diagnostic tests are often underused in Zambia, and patients with negative test results are often prescribed anti-malaria medications, according to a study.

The recent introduction of the effective but expensive artemisinin-based (a type of medication) combination therapy for malaria throughout Africa has led to renewed interest in improving the accuracy of diagnosis. The use of rapid antigen-detection diagnostic tests (RDTs) has been proposed as an approach for reducing overtreatment of malaria. The most widely used method to confirm a diagnosis of malaria is microscopy, according to background information in the article.

Davidson H. Hamer, M.D., of the Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, and colleagues from the Zambian Ministry of Health, the Kenyan Medical Research Institute and University of Oxford, assessed the association between use of microscopy and RDT and the prescription of antimalarials in Zambia. The researchers conducted a survey, carried out between March and May 2006, of 104 government and mission health facilities in four districts in Zambia. At each facility, data were collected during one working day on ill outpatients treated at the facility.

An equipment survey in the four districts revealed that 17 percent of the 104 health facilities had functional microscopy; 63 percent had RDTs. Overall, 73 percent of health facilities had at least 1 type of malaria diagnostics available.

Of the 1,717 patients (of all ages) with fever (suspected malaria), 27.8 percent treated in health facilities with malaria diagnostics were tested and 44.6 percent had positive test results. Of patients with negative blood smear results, 58.4 percent were prescribed an antimalarials, as were 35.5 percent of those with a negative RDT result. Most patients with fever (72.6 percent) did not have any diagnostic procedure performed. Antimalarial s were prescribed to 66 percent of these patients. About half of this group received artemether-lumefantrine (an artemisinin-based combination therapy).

In facilities with artemether-lumefantrine in stock, this antimalarial was prescribed to a large proportion of patients with fever with a positive diagnostic test result, but also to some with a negative diagnostic test result (blood smear, 30.4 percent; RDT, 26.7 percent).

"RDTs have been proposed as a cost-effective approach to reducing overtreatment of malaria; under current practice in Zambia, however, their use will not achieve this goal," the authors write.

"Given the widespread increase of artemisinin-based combination therapy in sub-Saharan Africa for management of uncomplicated malaria, there is a need to limit inappropriate use of these expensive new combinations. The increasing body of evidence that a substantial proportion of febrile patients do not have malaria, especially in low to moderate transmission zones, emphasizes the need to educate health center staff on the rational use of artemisinin-based combination therapy, which will require strengthening the availability of malaria diagnostics and enhancing quality control measures so that health care providers will have confidence in the test results."

"The RDT training program in Zambia needs to be restructured such that trainees are provided with clear instructions about how to respond to a negative test result. Without taking these steps, we may rapidly be confronted with widespread resistance of P falciparum to artemisinin-based combination therapy, and the lifespan of these highly effective new therapies will be reduced," the authors conclude.


'"/>




Related medicine news :

1. Cancer Risk From Exposure To Diagnostic X-Rays
2. Fragile X-Associated Tremor /Ataxia Syndrome Need Guidelines For Diagnostic Tests
3. Schizophrenia Gets A New Diagnostic Tool
4. A New Diagnostic Approach To Pediatric Interstitial Lung Disease
5. Diagnostic Procedure For Tuberculosis Made Easy
6. Apollo Hospitals Short-listed to Provide Diagnostics in the UK
7. Diagnostic Test Launched by Ranbaxy for En Masse Screening of Bird Flu
8. Diagnostic Centre Inaugurated for Air Pollution at SRMC
9. Lab Tests And Diagnostics - Next Wave Of Outsourcing
10. New Diagnostic Tool Uncovered Gene Expression Patterns in Recessive Genetic Disorders
11. eGFR Diagnostic Test -A reliable and understandable measure of kidney impairment
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:3/30/2017)... ... 30, 2017 , ... This morning, more than 275 medical ... support for an independent Vaccine Safety Commission. Five of the signers of the ... hold a press conference at 9:00 AM Friday, March 31 at the ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... ... ARI Network Services, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARIS) announced today that Rhino Ag has ... of more than 650 U.S.-based dealers. Rhino, a member of the Alamo Group, offers ... and cutters, rear blades, post hole diggers, pasture renovators, tillers, disc mowers and box ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... New York City, NY (PRWEB) , ... March ... ... governing body for men’s and women’s professional squash, announced it has enlisted New ... marketing partner. The agency will develop and procure sponsorship opportunities for the ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... ... main cause of hay fever in the United States, with an estimated 95 percent of ... July each year; with the worst time for sufferers being June and July. , ... provide an effective defense against grass pollen; they are proven in independent studies to trap ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... Amherst, Massachusetts (PRWEB) , ... March 30, 2017 , ... ... has had great success and feedback from high school and college students who have ... is being held July 7-23 and YFI is now accepting applications for enrollment. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:3/29/2017)... 2017  The Global Health Innovative Technology Fund ... to battle infectious diseases around the globe, today ... could help deliver a range of new innovative ... This latest round of targeted support ... testing a pediatric formulation of a drug considered ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... March 29, 2017 Optometrists have staunchly ... the highest standard in quality and care for ... its objective Wavefront-driven refraction technologies and process to ... enables an unprecedented level of refraction and correction ... relegated to Topgun Navy fighter pilots, but now ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition ... their offering. ... The global lifestyle drugs market to grow at a CAGR of ... Lifestyle Drugs Market 2017-2021, has been prepared based on an in-depth ... market landscape and its growth prospects over the coming years. The ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: