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Year : 2003  |  Volume : 49  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 218-221

Prognostic Implications of White Cell Differential Count and White Cell Morphology in Malaria

Departments of Critical Care Medicine, MGM New Bombay Hospital, Vashi, New Mumbai, India

Correspondence Address:
U M Jadhav
MGM New Bombay Hospital, Sector 3, Vashi. New Mumbai - 400 703
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 14597784

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BACKGROUND: Malaria is of immense importance amongst the tropical diseases in India. There is a need to develop newer diagnostic aids and research is necessary to identify new prognostic markers for prediction of the course and complications. AIMS: To evaluate the white cell differential count and morphology in Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium falciparum malaria and study their prognostic utility. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Two hundred and sixty-four adult patients in the age range of 20 to 65 years presenting to the hospital over a period of 4 months with clinical features of malaria and a positive peripheral smear examination were studied. RESULTS: No statistically significant difference was noted in the white blood cell (WBC) count and neutrophil count in P.vivax versus P. falciparum malaria. Band cells were more frequently noted in P. falciparum malaria than in P.vivax malaria (p < 0.0001). Toxic granulation of the neutrophils was noted in 9.5% of the patients and exclusively in P. falciparum malaria. Presence of toxic granulation of the polymorphs in subjects with P. falciparum malaria was significantly associated with anaemia (p=0.019), jaundice, cerebral involvement, adult respiratory distress syndromes, renal dysfunction and death (p < 0.0001 for all these parameters). CONCLUSION: Band cells were seen in P. vivax and P. falciparum malaria, although in higher numbers in P. falciparum malaria. Toxic granulation of the neutrophils was noted only in the presence of P. falciparum malaria in this study and correlated with severity.


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Online since 12th February '04
2004 - Journal of Postgraduate Medicine
Official Publication of the Staff Society of the Seth GS Medical College and KEM Hospital, Mumbai, India
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow