New malaria case reported in Florida, now 8 cases nationwide

An expert revealed that some patients have already required prolonged hospitalization due to the complications of the disease.

Since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that malaria has returned to the country, case numbers have been on the rise. This Tuesday, the Florida Department of Health revealed that seven infections have already been reported in the locality.

The latest case was found last week in Sarasota County, the exact location where the other six Florida cases have been identified. While they may seem few, the disease is considered serious. In addition, it has already been revealed that there was another locally acquired infection in Texas during June, bringing the total number to eight nationwide.

"Any case of malaria is serious and can progress to death," warned Dr. Monica Parise, director of CDC's Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria. The expert stressed that it is extremely important to make a quick diagnosis to start with the correct treatments and thus avoid worsening the disease.

Some of the Florida patients have already required longer than usual hospitalizations due to malaria complications.

"They are dehydrated, some of them. They have low blood counts, especially platelets, which puts them at risk for bleeding. Some of them have had renal kidney failure," reported Dr. Manuel Gordillo, an infectious disease specialist at Sarasota Memorial Hospital, a health center that has received several malaria-infected patients.

The disease returns after 20 years

Although malaria was a relatively common disease in the country before 1947, infections declined after a fumigation campaign and other measures. In fact, before this new wave of cases, the last time malaria cases were reported in the US was in 2003.