Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




Background/aim: The prevalences of Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax are increasing rapidly in Pakistan, but recent data on the epidemiology of malaria are not properly reported with scarce diagnostic methods for quick diagnosis. This study was designed to determine the current prevalence and distribution of Plasmodium species in the vicinity of Rawalpindi and Islamabad and report on the validity of the immunochromatographic test (ICT) in diagnosing malarial infections. Materials and methods: A total of 1500 blood samples obtained from a local hospital were screened during the course of this study via microscopic examination and ICT. Results: It was seen that malaria was highly endemic in this region. Both P. vivax and P. falciparum were prevalent in all age groups with high seasonal variations, showing a summer peak for P. vivax and a winter peak for P. falciparum. In a comparative study of the diagnostic methods it was observed that the ICT is 95% sensitive and 100% specific for both P. falciparum and P. vivax, while microscopic study was 100% sensitive and 96.8% specific. Conclusion: Epidemiological study of the malarial parasites showed that majority of the patients were from Rawalpindi as compared to Islamabad and that P. vivax was the dominant cause of malarial infection.


Malaria, immunochromatographic test, Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium vivax

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