Therapeutic Efficacy of Artesunate in Plasmodium Vivax Malaria in Thailand
Omid Safa, P Tan-ariya, S Kojima, S Looareesuwan, S Zare, Yaghoob Hamedi*
PO BOX: 79145-4188, Department of Parasitology, Bandar Abbas School of Medicine, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Hormozgan, Iran. Fax: 98(761)3330612 E-mail:
Our previous study showed that in vitro susceptibility of Plasmodium vivax to chloroquine has significantly decreased in Thailand within the past two decades. Thus, the evaluation of alternative antimalarials for treatment of vivax malaria is needed. The aim of this study was to examine parasitological and clinical efficacy of an artemisinin derivative (artesunate) for the treatment of vivax malaria in patients who were admitted to the Bangkok Hospital for Tropical Diseases. We randomly allocated patients aged 12-56 years to receive 3.3mg/kg (adult dose 200 mg) on the first day, and for the next four days each patient was given 1.65 mg/kg orally (adult dose 100 mg), total dose = 600 mg. After the five-day course of artesunate, primaquine was given: a single oral dose of 15mg for 14 days. A total number of 42 patients received treatment. All participants were followed up for 28 days. In all the cases, both parasitemia and fever were resolved rapidly; the mean fever clearance time and parasite clearance time, 14.6 and 36.7 hours, respectively, showed that therapeutic response to artesunate was better than that of chloroquine. The 14-day cure rate was 100%, but reappearance of parasitemia was seen in two patients on days 21 and 25 following treatment, respectively. These two cases of failure rate should be considered as true relapse rather than recrudescence, since the relapse interval in Southeast Asian vivax malaria according to recent findings seems to be 3 weeks after start of treatment, if primaquine is not given or an inadequate amount is given. In conclusion, artesunate might be useful in treatment of vivax malaria, causing a good blood schizontocidal effect. However, to prevent emerging resistance it should never be used alone.
Southeast Asian Journal of Tropical Medicine & Public Health ปี 2547, September ปีที่: 35 ฉบับที่ 3 หน้า 570-574