Journal Article

Comparison of Chloroquine with Artesunate in the Treatment of Cerebral Malaria in Ghanaian Children

Bamenla Quarm Goka, Victoria Adabayeri, Eugenia Ofori‐Adjei, Ben Quarshie, Gladys Asare‐Odei, Bartholemew Dicky Akanmori, Jorgen Kurtzhals, David Ofori‐Adjei and Janet Neequaye

in Journal of Tropical Pediatrics

Volume 47, issue 3, pages 165-169
Published in print June 2001 | ISSN: 0142-6338
Published online June 2001 | e-ISSN: 1465-3664 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/tropej/47.3.165
Comparison of Chloroquine with Artesunate in the Treatment of Cerebral Malaria in Ghanaian Children

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Despite previously reported chloroquine‐resistant forms of P. falciparum in Ghana, chloroquine remains the drug of choice in severe malaria. Artemisinin derivatives have been shown to be effective against chloroquine‐resistant strains in other endemic areas. This open randomized study was conducted to compare the efficacy of chloroquine and artesunate in the treatment of childhood cerebral malaria. Out of 82 subjects that fulfilled the inclusion criteria, 36 were randomized to receive chloroquine and 46 to receive artemisinin. Blantyre coma scores, temperature and parasitaemia were monitored. Mortality and neurological deficits were documented. There was no difference in mortality rates (chloroquine, 16.7 per cent; artesunate, 21.7 per cent; p = 0.6), neurological deficit at day 14 (chloroquine, 0 per cent; artesunate, 4.3 per cent; p = 0.3), resolution of fever (p = 0.55), and coma recovery time (p = 0.8), between the two groups. The results suggest that syrup chloroquine and intramuscular/oral artesunate currently give comparable clinical responses in the treatment of cerebral malaria in Ghana. Possible reasons for this are discussed, and suggestions are made for future antimalarial drug policy.

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Subjects: Paediatrics

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