The daily educational pearl – Blackwater fever

Blackwater fever

This is the popular name for the haemolytic anaemia associated with severe malaria.

It appears to be more commonly associated with Plasmodium falciparum, quinine therapy and recurrent malaria infection.

Signs / symptoms:

fever / rigors

jaundice

haemolytic anaemia – low haemoglobin, elevated bilirubin

haemoglobinuria

In severe cases it can progress to anuric renal failure and death.

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