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Malaria: Life-Threatening Complications - Topic Overview

Life-threatening complications can develop with a malaria infection, especially when a person is infected by the malaria-causing parasite Plasmodium (P.) falciparum.

When the parasite infects red blood cells, the cells stick to the walls of blood vessels. As the blood vessels become blocked, blood supply to vital organs stops, and the person may die without treatment.

Recommended Related to Adult Vaccines

Meningococcal Vaccine for Adults

The meningococcal vaccine protects against four types of meningococcal bacteria -- germs that cause meningococcal disease. Meningococcal disease can affect the lining around the brain or spinal cord (meningitis). Or, it can cause a blood infection (meningococcal bacteremia), pneumonia, or other problems. One in 10 infected people die from meningococcal disease. Those who survive may have lasting disabilities such as hearing loss or brain damage. That's why the meningococcal vaccine is so important...

Read the Meningococcal Vaccine for Adults article > >

Life-threatening situations because of malaria infection with P. falciparum may include:

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: April 11, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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