n South African Medical Journal - Artesunate v. quinine for severe malaria : correspondence

Volume 103, Issue 5
  • ISSN : 0256-9574
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



Severe malaria is a serious and deadly complication of malaria. We searched the literature to identify the current most efficacious pharmacotherapy for severe malaria. A recent Cochrane meta-analysis compared the efficacy of quinine with artesunate for severe malaria. The primary outcome was all-cause death. The meta-analysis included 8 trials. Artesunate reduced the risk of death both in adults (relative risk (RR) 0.61, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.50 - 0.75; 1 664 participants, 5 trials) and in children (RR 0.76, 95% CI 0.65 - 0.90; 5 765 participants, 4 trials). In addition, artesunate was less likely to cause hypoglycaemia.

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