Alteration of platelet counts and lipid profiles after treatment of acute Plasmodium vivax

Jang Su Kim, Jun Seo Oh, Eun Ah Chang, Sook Young Bae, Deok Hwa Nam, Chang Hwan Lee, Ji Hyun Yang, Chang Kyu Lee, Won Ja Lee, Heung Chul Kim, Terry A. Klein, Chae Seung Lim, Young Kee Kim

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11 Citations (Scopus)


During malaria infections, thrombocytopenia and low cholesterol levels are frequently observed changes. We compared these changes in patients admitted with fevers and infected with Plasmodium vivax, patients admitted with fevers with respiratory/urinary infections and afebrile normal (control) non-infected volunteers. Changes in the platelet count and lipid parameters are reported for malaria patients after treatment with hydroxychloroquine and primaquine for acute P. vivax malaria. Of a total 141 participants, 55 patients were diagnosed with malaria (positive blood smear) prior to treatment. Compared to the normal (n = 52) and non-malaria fever groups (n = 34), there was a significant decrease in five hematologic indices (white blood cell, red blood cell, hemoglobin, hematocrit and platelet) and three lipid parameters (total cholesterol, HDL-c and LDL-c) in the vivax malaria group at day 0 (pre-treatment). Following treatment, the platelet counts returned to normal limits (P < 0.05) from 91,058/μL on day 0 to 246,833/μL by day 17 after treatment. However, changes in the lipid parameters of malaria patients showed a slow recovery to normal limits compared to the platelet counts. The HDL-c and LDL-c remained low for 1 month after treatment but increased at 3 and 6 months post-treatment. At 12 months after treatment, the levels of two lipid parameters had fully recovered to the normal limits. Thus, special attention should be applied when interpreting laboratory blood profiles of malaria patients, especially platelet and lipid based tests, until full recovery after treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-43
Number of pages5
JournalActa Tropica
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Apr

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by U-health program of Korea University Medical Center, Seoul R&BD program.


  • Cholesterol
  • Lipid
  • Plasmodium vivax
  • Platelet
  • Treatment
  • Triglyceride

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Parasitology


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