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HEALTH IMPLICATIONS AND THE PROBLEM OF MALARIA AMONG ADULT

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ABSTRACT

This study was carried out on the health implications and problems of malaria among adults in Nigeria. To achieve this 3 research objectives were formulated.  The survey design was adopted and the simple random sampling techniques were employed in this study. The population size comprise of all medical staff of selected hospitals in Abuja. In determining the sample size, the researcher conveniently selected 65 respondents while 50 respondents were validated. Self-constructed and validated questionnaire was used for data collection. Respondents for this study were obtained from the medical staff of selected hospitals in Abuja. The collected and validated questionnaires were analyzed using frequency tables and percentage. The result of the findings reveals that; the major causes of malaria among adults in Nigeria include; Mosquito bites, Temperature and precipitation, Malaria vectors, Pollutants, Blood Transfusion and Immune System Deficiency. And there are numerous effect of malaria on adults which depends on body system, however the most common include; anemia and jaundice, a sudden drop in blood pressure, a build-up of fluid in the lungs, acute respiratory distress syndrome, abnormally low blood sugar and acute renal failure. More so, the study disclosed that the measures for preventing the frequent prevalence of malaria among adults include; application of insect repellent to exposed skin, use of a mosquito net over the bed, spraying of insecticide or repellent in homes and spraying of pyrethrin in bedrooms. With respect to the research findings, the study recommends that non-governmental organizations (NGO) should fully participate in enlightenment campaign in the locality and cleaning of roads, gutters and drainages should be encouraged to stop the spread of malaria. Also, adults should endeavor to use insecticides in their houses to prevent the bite of mosquitoes. And they should also endeavor to use insecticides treated net to cover themselves  in order to prevent mosquito bite. Additionally, adults should always keep their surroundings neat and bushes should always be clears as well as drainage systems.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background Of The Study

Malaria has been the focus of multiple declarations, and a range of targets have been set since the beginning of the millennium (WHO, 2015). In Africa`s malaria endemic countries, an average of 30% of all outpatient clinic visits are for malaria (Roll Back Malaria, 2008). In these same countries, between 20% and 50% of all hospital admissions are a consequence of malaria (Roll Back Malaria Partnership, 2013). With high case-fatality rates due to late presentation, inadequate management, and unavailability or stock-outs of effective drugs, malaria is also a major contributor to deaths among hospital inpatients in Africa (Roll Back Malaria Partnership, 2013). People are at increased risk both of becoming infected with malaria and of becoming infected more frequently (Roll Back Malaria Partnership, 2013). Families live in dwellings that offer little protection against mosquitoes and are reluctant towards affording insecticide-treated nets etc (Roll Back Malaria, 2011).

The population at high risk of malaria incidence in Nigeria is estimated at 135,552,389 (WHO, 2015). The countrys’ confirmed and suspected cases of Malaria incidence as at 2015, stood at 19,555,575 people (WHO, 2015), with adults accounting for over 28% of the victims. Among vector borne diseases, the malaria is influenced by seasonal or spatial changes in the environment (Messina et al., 2011). Environmental factors such as the presence of bushes and stagnant water around homes, rainfall, low altitude and high temperatures favor the breeding of malaria vectors, as well as parasite reproduction within them (Messina et al., 2011). Malaria has, therefore, been defined as an environmental disease (Hay et al., 2000). The key to addressing the challenge of reducing malaria parasite prevalence is an integrated approach that combines preventative measures, such as Insecticide Treated bed Nets (ITNs), Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS), improved access to effective anti-malarial drugs (Kokwaro, 2009), as well as proper environmental management. Climate has been established as an important determinant in the distribution of vectors and pathogens (Odetoyinbo, 1969). Tropical areas including Nigeria have the best combination of adequate rainfall, temperature and humidity allowing for breeding and survival of anopheles mosquitoes (Efe and Ojoh, 2013). An increase in rainfall and temperature enhances mosquito development and improved breeding sites leading to incidence of malaria (Vincent and Sunday, 2015). Rainfall provides the breeding sites for mosquitoes and increases relative humidity necessary for mosquito survival, leading to increase in the number of mosquitoes biting an individual per unit time (Lindsay and Martens, 1998). An adult mosquito`s chance of survivorship is determined by the ambient temperature, humidity and rainfall. Warmer ambient temperatures shorten the duration of the extrinsic cycle, thus increasing the chances of transmission (Jackson and Yang, 2010). Malaria pandemic alone has caught the attention of both the local authorities and international agencies. Several measures have been adopted to reduce the rate of morbidity due to malaria. It is believed that climatic parameters had changed significantly over the past two/three decades (Akinbobola and Oluleye, 2010). Hence, a deeper knowledge of environmental variables, conducive to mosquito vector life cycle, is important to target control interventions most importantly among adults. Modeling environmental variables are very valuable in defining foci of malaria transmission. The development of spatial analytical techniques has created an avenue to evaluate environmental variables that are generated by remote sensing satellite sensors and captured by Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for spatial and temporal environmental analysis (Tanser and Le Sueur, 2002; Thomas et al., 2002). For an effective malaria management especially, the knowledge of adults on how and where climatic and environmental conditions favouring the development and spread of malaria vector can be of great benefit to health management agencies, thus enabling containment and treatment efforts to be focused where most needed. A detailed survey needs to be carried out on the health implications and problems of malaria especially among adults, which is the major interest of this study.

1.2 Statement Of The Problem

Malaria is caused by Plasmodium falciparum, and the mosquitoes Anopheles gambiae, Anopheles funestus, Anopheles arabiensis, and Anopheles moucheti are the major vectors that cause year-round transmission; artemether-lumefantrine (AL) or artesunate + amodiaquine (AS + AQ) is the treatment regime adopted in 2004 [1, 7]. Notably, malaria is one of the most severe global public health problems worldwide, particularly in Africa, where Nigeria has the greatest number of malaria cases.

Major risk factors enhancing malaria prevalence and transmission among adults in Nigeria include demographic factors, environmental factors, and socioeconomic factors. Demographic factors include age and gender, while environmental factors include the presence or absence of bushes and forests which enhance mosquito breeding. Meanwhile, climatic factors include temperature, humidity, and rainfall that may support rapid growth and development of mosquito vectors. Lastly, socioeconomic factors such as education, occupation and income which can directly affect human exposure and treatment pattern. These factors have been well reported, particularly in rural and peri-urban communities in previous studies. Govoetchan and colleagues(Mark 2016), observed that malaria prevalence among adults in Nigeria was 5.5 times higher  compare to young adults (youths). Hence, this study epistle aims at examining the health implications and problems of malaria among adults in Nigeria.

1.3 Objective Of The Study

The overall and major goal of this study is to examine the health implications and problems of malaria among adults in Nigeria. Specifically, the study aims at;

1. Identifying the major causes of malaria among adults in Nigeria.

1 Identifying the effect of malaria on adults in Nigeria.

2 Identifying the measures for preventing the frequent prevalence of malaria among adults.

1.4 Research Questions

The study will provide answers to the following questions which are significant to the research.

1. What are the major causes of malaria among adults in Nigeria.

2. What are the effect of malaria on adults in Nigeria?

3. What are the measures for preventing the frequent prevalence of malaria among adults?


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