The clinical manifestations of cerebral malaria among Nigerian children with the sickle cell trait.
In order to describe the interaction between haemoglobin type and the clinical manifestations of cerebral malaria, we studied 60 children aged between 6 and 60 months at University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria. Haemoglobin AS individuals with cerebral malaria did not exhibit major differences in clinical and laboratory characteristics when compared with their haemoglobin AA counterparts. There were no deaths among the Hb AS children compared with an 18% mortality in the Hb AA group. Blood transfusion rates were higher in the AS than in the AA children (86% vs 44%). The higher transfusion rates in the AS group is consistent with in-vitro observations of sickling of parasitized red cells containing Hb S which in vivo would be cleared by the reticuloendothelial system. It is concluded that the clinical manifestations of cerebral malaria are essentially similar in children with haemoglobins AS and AA but the former have higher transfusion needs and are less likely to die.
Olumese, PE; Adeyemo, AA; Ademowo, OG; Gbadegesin, RA; Sodeinde, O; Walker, O
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