Epidemiology of imported malaria to Catalonia (Spain): 2001–2006

Abstract number: P746

Quesada M., Cardenosa N., Millet J.P., Acosta L., Oviedo M., Caylà J.A., García R., Rodríguez E., Sánchez L., Domínguez Á.

Objective: To describe the epidemiology of malaria imported to Catalonia in six years (2001–2006).

Methods: In this retrospective study, we investigated malaria using data provided by database reports of illness of obligatory declaration from 2001 to 2006. Epidemiological data were analysed by age, sex, country of origin, country and date of trip, reason of travel, chemoprophylaxis, type of malaria, specie of plasmodium, treatment, length of hospital stay and outcome.

Results: During the study period, 1000 cases were notified in Catalonia, 94% (944) laboratory confirmed. Missing information or indeterminate results affected all variables. Almost all malaria cases (99.8%, 936) were imported: 87.6% (784) from Africa, 8.7% (78) from Central and South America, 3.6% (32) from Asia and 0.1% (1) from Oceania, by 24% (192) Spanish citizens and 76% (623) immigrants. Forty-nine percent of cases (441) were imported from Western Africa. In 80% (674) of patients P. falciparum aetiology, 14% (120) P. vivax, 4% (32) P. ovale and 2% (15) P. malariae were confirmed. Among the subjects, 60% (600) were men. The youngest patient was 5 months and the oldest 92 years old, 52% of patients (522) were in the age group 21 to 40 years old. Most common reasons for travel were individual travel 43% (254), tourism 37% (219) and professional or missionary travel 17% (102). In 25% (210) cases some kind of chemoprophylaxis was documented, but only 29% (60) specified which drugs were taken and only 10% (21) of cases did it correctly. Chemoprophylaxis consisted in mefloquine in 57% (85) of cases, chloroquine phosphate in 12% (18) and doxicicline in 7% (10). Fifty-nine percent (533) of patients required hospitalisation and 16% (75) of them stayed at the hospital more than 7 days. Four cases of malaria death were reported, all of them due to P. falciparum infection. These patients were Spanish adults that travelled to African countries and did not take chemoprophylaxis. Two hundred three children living in Catalonia and travelling to their parents' endemic country of origin became infected by Plasmodium spp., 55% (111) of them did not take antimalarial drugs.

Conclusions: During the period 2001–2006 in Catalonia P. falciparum was the main aetiology. Western Africa is the region and the continent from which most cases are imported. Immigrants contribute with most of cases. Children and Spanish adults deserve special attention because they often do not take preventive measures.

Session Details

Date: 19/04/2008
Time: 00:00-00:00
Session name: 18th European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Presentation type:
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