Artesunate reduces mortality and should now be the treatment of choice in severe malaria in adults: good news for countries in our region, but registration in Australia must wait
For nearly 400 years quinine has been the principal drug used to treat severe malaria. Despite its long history of efficacy, quinine has significant limitations. Even with prompt administration, case-fatality rates in severe malaria often exceed 20%.1 Furthermore, quinine requires three-times-daily administration and has a number of adverse effects including hypoglycaemia, vomiting, headache and tinnitus.1
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