Patients suffered with malaria need to take precautionary measures as they could be vulnerable to heart failure risk. As per the latest research, such patients are 30 percent higher risk of heart failure.
“We have seen an increase in the incidence of malaria cases and what is intriguing is that we have seen the same increase in cardiovascular disease in the same regions,” said the first author of the study, Philip Brainin, a postdoctoral research fellow at the Herlev-Gentofte University Hospital in Denmark was quoted as saying by IANS.
“Even though we have taken preventive measures to decrease the malaria numbers, it remains a major burden,” Brainin said.
According to the 2018 statistics of the World Health Organization (WHO), the mosquito-borne infection affects more than 219 million people worldwide each year.
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The researchers used Danish nationwide registries to identify patients with a history of malaria infection between January 1994 and January 2017.
“These patients had a 30 percent increased likelihood of developing heart failure over the follow-up time,” Brainin said. More research will be needed to further validate the findings, but recent studies have found that malaria could be a contributor to functional and structural changes in the myocardium, which is the muscle tissue of the heart.
Experimental studies have also shown that malaria may affect the blood pressure regulatory system causing hypertension, which is a contributor to heart failure.
The findings were presented at the ESC Congress 2019 together with the World Congress of Cardiology in Paris.
Among the high malaria burden countries, India has made substantial progress in disease control.