Test Detail
Interpreting Results

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Written by
Dr. Betina Chandolia
BDS, MDS - Oral Pathology and Microbiology
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Dr. Ashish Ranjan
MBBS, MD (Pharmacology)
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Malarial Parasite Identification

You need to provide
This test is for
Male, Female
Test Preparation
  1. No special preparation required


What is Malarial Parasite Identification?

This test is done to identify the presence of malarial parasites in the blood. Malaria is an infectious disease which is caused by species of Plasmodium parasite. It is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. The species which cause malaria in humans include P. Vivax, P. malariae, P. ovale, and P. falciparum. This test is advised if you experience any signs and symptoms of malaria like shaking chills, fever, headache, and profuse sweating.

The malarial parasite can be identified by examining a blood smear slide under the microscope. A positive result indicates the presence of the malarial parasite while a negative result indicates no malarial parasite.

Why is Malarial Parasite Identification done?

  1. If you have signs or symptoms suggestive of malaria like fever with shaking chills, headaches, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, profuse sweating, headache
  2. As a part of fever panel 

What does Malarial Parasite Identification Measure?

The malarial parasite can be identified by examining a blood smear slide under the microscope. 

A drop of blood is spread on a slide which is called smear. It is then stained with Giemsa stain which helps by giving the malaria parasite a distinctive appearance.

The diagnosis is made by spotting out the parasite of malaria or its antigens or its products in the smear. Thick smears help to detect the presence of parasite while thin smears help to detect the type of species of parasite. Thin smears help in evaluating the presence of schizonts (stage of malarial parasite with presence of many small nuclei), gametocytes (stage of malarial parasite where it can produce more gametes), and the presence of any pigmentation due to the malarial parasite in the blood. This test is done to detect the presence of the malarial parasite in the blood. It is also used to monitor the progress of treatment with malaria. Once the treatment of malaria is started, the doctor may advise a re-test to monitor the treatment. 

Interpreting Malarial Parasite Identification results


Positive results indicate the presence of malarial parasites in peripheral blood examination.

Negative results indicate that no malarial parasite is seen on peripheral blood examination.

Answers to Patient Concerns & Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Malarial Parasite Identification

Frequently Asked Questions about Malarial Parasite Identification

Q. Is there any preparation required before the test?
Inform the doctor about the medications you may be taking. No other specific preparations are usually required before this test.
Q. Do negative results mean that malaria is not there?
No, negative results do not confirm that malaria is not present. These negative results might be due to the absence of malarial parasite in the prepared peripheral blood film. In such cases, your doctor may advise you a re-test if the symptoms of malaria persist.
Q. How does malaria spread in the body?
Malaria spreads through the bite of a female anopheles mosquito. When the female anopheles mosquito bites the humans, the parasites of malaria get transferred to the humans and they reach the liver. Once the infection is inside the body, the parasite takes a week to a month to enter the red blood cells (RBCs) in humans. In the RBCs, they multiply within 2-3 days and produce symptoms of malaria.
Q. Can Malaria occur through only by the bite of female anopheles mosquito?
No, it is not necessary that malaria can also be caused by the bite of the female anopheles mosquito. Malaria can also occur after an organ transplant, by sharing needles or syringes, or after blood transfusion.
Q. How is the blood sample taken?
The healthcare provider takes a blood sample from the arm. The site from where the blood is to be withdrawn is cleaned with a swab of rubbing alcohol. This is then followed by inserting a small needle which has a tube attached to it for collecting blood. Once the sufficient blood for analysis is withdrawn, the needle is removed. The site is then covered with a gauze pad.
Q. Is there any risk associated with the withdrawal of blood sample procedure?
As such there is no risk but in few cases, bruising, bleeding, and infection at the puncture site can be seen. In very few cases, there can be swelling of the vein after the blood is withdrawn.
Q. What is Malaria?
It is an infectious disease which is caused by a species of Plasmodium. These parasites spread through the bite of the female anopheles mosquito. The species of Plasmodium that infect humans include Plasmodium vivax, Plasmodium ovale, Plasmodium malariae, and Plasmodium falciparum.
Q. What are the symptoms of Malaria?
The symptoms of malaria include chills, high fever, heavy sweating, nausea, vomiting, headache, pain in the abdomen, diarrhea, and pain in muscles.
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