Parenteral artesunate (AS) is the WHO first-line treatment recommended in adults and children for severe malaria. Post-artesunate delayed haemolysis (PADH) is an uncommon adverse reaction to AS with a mechanism that is not fully understood, occurring in adults and children. Neutropenia is another possible finding after AS treatment, albeit rare. We present the case of a child who experienced both effects after treatment with AS for imported severe Falciparum malaria with very high parasitaemia. In addition, thirty-five paediatric cases of PADH, five cases of delayed anaemia without known haemolysis, and fourteen cases of neutropenia after artesunate treatment were identified from the literature review. PADH seems to be a dose-independent reaction and is not strongly related to hyperparasitaemia, although it is more frequent in this case. To date, the benefits of AS outweigh its potential side effects. However, haematological follow-up is mandatory to avoid possible complications from anaemia and neutropenia, especially in children treated with other contemporary drugs.

Treatment for Severe Malaria: Post-Artesunate Delayed Haemolysis and Neutropenia

Liberati C.;Bua B.;Barbieri E.;Costenaro P.;Di Chiara C.;Giaquinto C.;Dona D.
2022

Abstract

Parenteral artesunate (AS) is the WHO first-line treatment recommended in adults and children for severe malaria. Post-artesunate delayed haemolysis (PADH) is an uncommon adverse reaction to AS with a mechanism that is not fully understood, occurring in adults and children. Neutropenia is another possible finding after AS treatment, albeit rare. We present the case of a child who experienced both effects after treatment with AS for imported severe Falciparum malaria with very high parasitaemia. In addition, thirty-five paediatric cases of PADH, five cases of delayed anaemia without known haemolysis, and fourteen cases of neutropenia after artesunate treatment were identified from the literature review. PADH seems to be a dose-independent reaction and is not strongly related to hyperparasitaemia, although it is more frequent in this case. To date, the benefits of AS outweigh its potential side effects. However, haematological follow-up is mandatory to avoid possible complications from anaemia and neutropenia, especially in children treated with other contemporary drugs.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3448967
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