Prevalence, associated factors and effects of malaria parasitaemia in pregnancy in a tertiary hospital in northeastern Nigera.

  • B Bako
  • B.M Audu
  • A.D Geidam
  • B.M Malah
  • H.A Ngadda
  • A.B Musa
  • H.M Sadauki
Keywords: Pregnancy, malaria parasitemia, prevalence, consequences, prevention.


Background: About 30 million women living in malaria endemic area become pregnant each year. We determined the prevalence, determinants and consequences of malaria parasitemia in pregnancy in
Maiduguri, North-eastern Nigeria. Method: Four hundred healthy pregnant women were randomly selected for the study. Packed cell
volume estimation and blood film examination for malaria parasite were done at booking and delivery. Cord blood and placental tissue were also examined for malaria parasite. Risk factors and consequences of malaria parasitemia were determined. Results: The prevalence of malaria parasitemia at booking was 60.3% with mean parasite density of 701.04+382.22 parasite/l. These dropped to 28.8% and 405.17+310.43 parasite/l, respectively at delivery. The factors associated with malaria parasitemia were young maternal age (p<0.001), low parity (p<0.001), late booking (p=0.029) and non-usage of Intermittent Preventive Therapy (IPT) (p<0.001). Compared to pregnant women who had no malaria parasitaemia at delivery, those who had were more likely to have maternal anemia (OR = 3.5, 95% Cl = 2.2-5.5), preterm delivery (OR = 2.5, 95% Cl = 1.12-5.2), low birth weight (OR = 10.5, 95% Cl = 4.4-25.1), placental malaria (OR = 6.00, 95% Cl = 3.7-9.6) and cord parasitemia (OR = 16.9, 95% Cl = 8.5-33.6). Conclusion: There were high prevalence of malaria parasitemia and parasite density in pregnancy at booking. However, both declined remarkably at delivery as a result of intermitten preventive therapy.

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