Research Article

The treatment of malaria.

BMJ 1976; 1 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.1.6005.323 (Published 07 February 1976) Cite this as: BMJ 1976;1:323
  1. A P Hall

    Abstract

    At least four doses of quinine followed by a single dose of mefloquine or by a single dose of sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine are two highly effective regimens for chloroquine-resistant falciparum malaria. Mefloquine alone is valuable in ambulant patients. Chloroquine-sensitive falciparum malaria can be treated with a course of chloroquine. Vivax and all other types of malaria should be treated with sequential chloroquine and primaquine. Quinine, by intravenous infusion, is the most effective drug for severe falciparum malaria. The optimum intravenous dose varies between 5 mg/kg and 10 mg/kg administered over four hours. Intravenous or oral quinine should be administered about every 12 hours and the total daily dose of quinine should rarely exceed 20 mg/kg. Intravenous fluid input should be controlled in falciparum malaria to prevent pulmonary oedema. Established renal failure is best treated by dialysis. The value of adrenocortical steroids for falciparum coma has not been established. Fresh blood transfusion may be helpful in small doses for severe anaemia and to replace clotting factors. Anticoagulants, such as heparin, should not be used in falciparum malaria.