Study of Methaemoglobin in Malaria Patients
To estimate the concentration of methemoglobin (MetHb) in malaria patients and correlate with severity of malaria infection. This prospective study included 30 untreated cases of malaria confirmed by Quantitative Buffy Coat (QBC) test and 30 age sex matched non-malarial cases taken as controls. All the patients underwent thorough clinical examination and routine biochemical investigation. Methemoglobin levels were estimated by spectrophotometric (co-oxymeter) method on day 1 and day 10 of diagnosis of all study group patients and correlated with clinical profile and severity. Out of 30 malaria patients 22 were males and eight were females. The clinical presentations in complicated malaria group (n = 21) were fever 21 (100 %), anemia 17 (80.95 %), renal failure 12 (52.38 %) and coma/convulsion 5 (23.8 %). The mean age of the study group was 41.66 years. Mean MetHb in complicated malaria on day 1 was 2.55 ± 1.75 % and day 10 was 10.69 ± 8.19 % (statistically significant). The overall mortality was 13 (43.33 %) among study group while 5 (16.66 %) was found among control group. Mean MetHb who died (n = 13) on day 1 was 3.144 ± 1.829 % and (n = 8) on day 10 it was 19.982 ± 8.406 %. Increase in level of methaemoglobin is detrimental to the body and is associated with increase in mortality. Routine MetHb estimation may be used as a prognostic indicator in the management of malaria patients. It is suggested that addition of drugs which reduce MetHb may be tried along with antimalarial drugs to decrease morbidity and mortality in malaria.
KeywordsMethaemoglobin Prognosticator Malaria
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