Malarial Parasite Identification
What is Malarial Parasite Identification?
Malaria is an infectious disease which is caused by species of Plasmodium parasite. It is transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito (female anopheles). The species which cause infections in humans include Plasmodium Vivax, Plasmodium malariae, Plasmodium ovale, and Plasmodium falciparum. This test is done to identify the presence of malarial parasite in the blood.
Why is Malarial Parasite Identification done?
- If you have signs or symptoms suggestive of malaria like fever with shaking chills, headaches, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, profuse sweating, headache
- 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.