Level and dynamics of malaria transmission and morbidity in an equatorial area of South Cameroon
We conducted parasitological and entomological malaria surveys among the population of Mengang district in southern Cameroon to analyse the relationship between malaria transmission intensity and malaria morbidity. We investigated two adjacent areas which differ 10-fold in transmission intensity [annual entomological inoculation rate (EIR) 17 vs. 170], but have very similar Plasmodium falciparum malariometric profiles with parasite prevalences of 58 vs. 64%, high parasitaemia prevalences (> 1000 parasites/μl) of 15 vs. 16% and the same morbidity of 0.17–0.5 attacks/person/year. Plasmodium malariae prevalence was 14 vs. 16%. One possible explanation is that the similarity of the duration of the short and high transmission seasons in both areas is equally, if not more, significant for parasitological and clinical profiles as the annual EIR. We discuss the relationships between variations in transmission levels, parasitaemia and clinical incidence, and draw parallels to similar situations elsewhere.
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