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Malaria status & challenges of the epidemic

 

Glossary over Malaria

Anemia

A defficiency of red blood cells in the bloodstream, resulting in insufficient oxygen being carried to tissues and organs.

Symptoms of anemia include feeling tired, weak, and short of breath. (Source: GreenFacts)

Anopheles

A genus of mosquito, some species of which can transmit human malaria. (Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Malaria Glossary  )

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Artemisinin

Artemisinin is a fast acting and highly effective anti malarial drug derived from the plant Artemesia Annua L (sweet wormwood, also known as the Chinese herbal Qinghao).

To guarantee the effectiveness of artemisinin, it is best used in combination with a longer-acting partner drug.

(Source: GreenFacts, based on The Artemisinin Enterprise, About us  )

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DDT

DDT is a colourless chemical pesticide that was widely used in the 1940s and 1950s to destroy disease-carrying, crop-eating insects. It was found to be toxic to animals and humans and banned by many countries since the 1970s because of its persistence in the environment and accumulation along the food chain. (Source: GreenFacts)

Drug resistance

Drug resistance occurs when a cell or bacteria becomes less sensitive to a specific drug. The clinical consequence of this is the decreased effectiveness of that drug to cure a disease or to improve a patient's symptoms.

Respiratory infections, HIV/AIDS, diarrhoeal diseases, tuberculosis and malaria are the leading killers among the infectious diseases. In recent years, all of these diseases have become resistant to first-line drugs. (Source: GreenFacts )

Endemic

Found only in a certain strictly limited geographical region, i.e. restricted to a specified region or locality. Can apply for instance to a disease or to an animal or plant species. (Source: GreenFacts)

Epidemic

The widespread outbreak of a disease, or a large number of cases of a disease in a single community or relatively small area. (Source: CoRIS Glossary  )

Epidemiological studies

Studies on human populations, which attempt to link human health effects (e.g. cancer) to a cause (e.g. exposure to a specific chemical). (Source: GreenFacts)

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Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria

“The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria was created to dramatically increase resources to fight three of the world's most devastating diseases, and to direct those resources to areas of greatest need.

The Global Fund is a unique global public/private partnership dedicated to attracting and disbursing additional resources to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. This partnership between governments, civil society, the private sector and affected communities represents a new approach to international health financing. The Global Fund works in close collaboration with other bilateral and multilateral organizations to supplement existing efforts dealing with the three diseases.” (Source: The Global Fund   )

HIV/AIDS

HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus, a virus that infects cells of the human immune system and destroys or impairs their function. Infection with this virus results in the progressive depletion of the immune system, leading to immune deficiency.

Immunodeficient people are much more vulnerable to a wide range of infections, most of which are very rare among people without immune deficiency.

AIDS stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome and describes the collection of symptoms and infections associated with acquired deficiency of the immune system. Infection with HIV has been established as the underlying cause of AIDS. (Source: UNAIDS Fast facts about AIDS   )

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Incidence

The frequency of a disease may be measured in two (standard) ways:

- Incidence is the number of new cases detected in the population at risk for the disease during a specific period.

- Prevalence (Source: Health canada Diabetes in Canada  )

Infection

It is the growth of a parasite within the human body that causes illness. It can be a virus, a bacteria, a fungus or a protozoa. (Source: GreenFacts )

Insecticide

A substance that kills insects. (Source: FAO Glossary of biotechnology & genetic engineering  )

Malaria

Malaria is caused by a parasite called Plasmodium, which is transmitted via the bites of infected [female] mosquitoes. In the human body, the parasites multiply in the liver, and then infect red blood cells.

Symptoms of malaria include fever, headache, and vomiting, and usually appear between 10 and 15 days after the mosquito bite. If not treated, malaria can quickly become life-threatening by disrupting the blood supply to vital organs. In many parts of the world, the parasites have developed resistance to a number of malaria medicines.

Key interventions to control malaria include: prompt and effective treatment with artemisinin-based combination therapies; use of insecticidal nets by people at risk; and indoor residual spraying with insecticide to control the vector mosquitoes. (Source: WHO Malaria  )

Millennium Development Goals

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), endorsed by governments at the United Nations in September 2000, aim to improve human well-being by reducing poverty, hunger, child and maternal mortality, ensuring education for all, controlling and managing diseases, tackling gender disparity, ensuring sustainable development and pursuing global partnerships.

The eight MDGs are:

Goal 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
Goal 2: Achieve universal primary education
Goal 3: Promote gender equality and empower women
Goal 4: Reduce child mortality
Goal 5: Improve maternal health
Goal 6: Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other disease
Goal 7: Ensure environmental sustainability
Goal 8: Develop a global partnership for development (Source: GreenFacts, based on the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment )

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Morbidity

A disease or the incidence of a disease within a population. (Source: GreenFacts)

Mortality

Death. Usually the cause (a specific disease, a condition, or an injury) is stated. (Source: ATSDR Glossary of Terms   )

Parasite

An animal or plant that lives in or on a host (another animal or plant); it obtains nourishment from the host without benefiting or killing the host. (Source: WordNet  )

Pesticide resistance

The genetically acquired ability of an organism to survive a pesticide application at doses that once killed most individuals of the same species. (Source: University of California; Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program Glossary  )

Plasmodium falciparum

Plasmodium falciparum is one of the four distinct species of the malaria parasite that affect humans. The Plasmodium falciparum parasite gives rise to infections that may rapidly become life-threatening, causing the most severe form of malaria.

It is found in many tropical and subtropical regions of the world, especially in Africa.

(Source: GreenFacts based on Wellcome Trust, Plasmodium falciparum  )

Pregnancy outcomes

Results of conception and ensuing pregnancy, such as sex ratio, birth weight, spontaneous abortion, congenital malformations, lower birth weight, preterm delivery or stillbirth. (Source: GreenFacts)

Prevalence

The frequency of a disease may be measured in two (standard) ways:

  • Prevalence is the total number of persons known to have had the disease at any time during a specific period. It gives an idea of the importance/burden of disease at a given time, and it is widely used in public health monitoring and planning.
  • Incidence
Protozoa

Large group of unicellular animals which are bigger and more complex than bacteria.

Undetectable to naked eyes, most of them are around 0.01-0.05 mm. Examples include amoebas and flagellates.

Protozoa can cause diseases such as malaria and sleeping sickness.

Untreated water may be contaminated with protozoa some of which may not be killed by disinfection alone. (Source: GreenFacts)

Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation

"Poverty reduction and sustainable development are the principal tasks of the SDC. To facilitate the achievement of these goals, the SDC focuses on various thematic priorities. In each thematic domain, a sub-goal is targeted while ever keeping in mind the fact that the priority themes are intimately linked to one another." (Source: SDC website )

Therapy

Measures taken to treat a physical or mental disease.

First-line therapy is the first type of therapy given for a condition or disease.

Second-line therapy is the treatment that is given when initial treatment (first-line therapy) doesn't work, or stops working. (Source: based on St Jude Hospital Medical Terminology & Drug Database )

WHO Regions

"The Member States of the World Health Organization (WHO) are grouped into six regions (see map below). These regions are organizational groupings and, while they are based on geographical terms, are not synonymous with geographical areas. Note that the WHO regions are not the same as those of the United Nations.

For a complete list of the Member States of each WHO region, please click on the links:

WHO World Regional Offices
  WHO African Region  (46 countries)
  WHO European Region  (53 countries)
  WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region  (21 countries)
  WHO Region of the Americas  (35 countries)
  WHO South-East Asia Region  (11 countries)
  WHO Western Pacific Region  (27 countries)

Each WHO region has a regional office. Regional offices are actively developing and implementing chronic disease prevention and control strategies in association with country offices as part of WHO's global response to the prevention and control of chronic, noncommunicable diseases. The development of these strategies is at different stages in each region. See above the websites of regional offices for more information on strategies." (Source: GreenFacts, based on WHO; Working with the regions  )

World Health Organization

"The World Health Organization  (WHO) is the directing and coordinating authority on international health within the United Nations’ system. WHO experts produce health guidelines and standards, and help countries to address public health issues. WHO also supports and promotes health research. Through WHO, governments can jointly tackle global health problems and improve people’s well-being.

193 countries and two associate members are WHO’s membership. They meet every year at the World Health Assembly in Geneva to set policy for the Organization, approve the Organization’s budget, and every five years, to appoint the Director-General. Their work is supported by the 34-member Executive Board, which is elected by the Health Assembly. Six regional committees focus on health matters of a regional nature."

WHO's scientific publications are widely recognized as a reference source.

The WHO has a number of regional offices which address the specific issues of those regions.

WHO World Regional Offices
  WHO African Region  (46 countries)
  WHO European Region  (53 countries)
  WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region  (21 countries)
  WHO Region of the Americas  (35 countries)
  WHO South-East Asia Region  (11 countries)
  WHO Western Pacific Region  (27 countries)

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