Cerebral malaria (CM) is a diffuse encephalopathy associated with coma and seizures commonly caused by Plasmodium falciparum (P. falciparum) in children with severe malaria. We present a case of a 19-year-old man with CM due to Plasmodium vivax (P. vivax) infection. Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) was negative for Japanese B encephalitis, enterovirus, herpes simplex 1 and 2, varicella and mumps viruses as determined by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). P. falciparum and P. vivax species were analysed by microscopy, immunochromatography and PCR assays and confirmed mono-infection of P. vivax in the patient’s blood, and P. falciparum infection was established to be negative. The patient was discharged after intensive supportive care and antimalarial treatment (intravenous artesunate and oral doxycycline). We conclude that P. vivax infection is associated with CM, a life-threatening complication rarely seen in coastal districts of Karnataka. In endemic areas, the possibility of CM should be considered even with P. vivax infection.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Infectious Diseases