Skip to main navigation menu Skip to main content Skip to site footer

Research Article

Vol. 9 No. 1 (2006)

Potential risk of induced malaria by blood transfusion in South-eastern Nigeria

  • Chigozie Jesse Uneke
  • Ogbonnaya Ogbu
  • Vincent Nwojiji
November 7, 2020


Induced malaria by blood transfusion is a potential health hazard but is often neglected in many malaria endemic areas. Standard parasitological technique was used to determine the prevalence of malaria among blood donors in the South-eastern Nigeria. Of the total 325 blood donors (310 males and 15 females) screened, 133 (40.9%, CI 95%: 35.6-46.2%) were infected with malaria parasite, 78 (58.6%) had 1-10 parasites per 100 thick film fields ('+' or 4-40 parasites per mm3) while 55 (41.4%) had 11-100 parasites per 100 thick film fields ('++' or 41-400 parasites per mm3). P. falciparum was identified in all the infected cases, however 3 (2.3%) persons had mixed infection with P. malariae. Males were more infected (41.3%, CI 95%: 35.8-46.8%) than females (33.3%, CI 95%: 9.4-57.2%). The infection decreased with age with highest prevalence of 48.5% among those aged 20-25 years. The infection significantly varied with age but not with sex (P<0.05). Individuals with blood group B were slightly more infected (42.1%, 95%CI., 19.6-64.6%) than those of groups O (41.0%,CI 95%: 35.3-46.7%) and A (40.0%, CI 95%: 20.8-59.2%) but there was no significant difference (P < 0.05). Highest prevalence of infection was recorded in the month of April corresponding to the onset of the wet season. An overhaul of existing blood donation policies in many health facilities in the sub-Saharan Africa to incorporate malaria screening is advocated. Curative antimalarial drugs followed by prophylactic drugs should be given to all recipients of Parasitized blood.


  1. World Health Organization. Expert Committee on Malaria. WHO Technical Report Series. 892, i-v. Geneva: WHO, 2000.
  2. World Health Organization. The African Malaria Report 2003.Geneva: WHO/UNICEF, 2003.
  3. Woolsey G. Transfusion for pernicious anaemia: two cases. Annals of Surgery 1991; 53: 132-135.
  4. Wylie BR. Transfusion transmitted infection: viral and exotic diseases. Anaesthetics and Intensive Care 1993; 21: 24- 30 .
  5. Cheesbrough M. District Laboratory Practice in Tropical Countries. Part 1. Cambridge: University Press, 1998.
  6. Kinde-Gazard, Oke J, Gnahoui I, Massougbodji A.The risk of malaria transmission by blood transfusion at Cotonou, Benin. Sante 2000; 10: 389-92.
  7. Sazama K. Prevention of transfusion-transmitted malaria: is it time to revisit the standards? Transfusion 1991; 31: 786- 788.
  8. Slinger R, Giulivi A, Bodie-Collins M, et al. Transfusion- transmitted malaria in Canada. Canadian Medical Association Journal. 2001; 164: 377-379.
  9. Mungai M, Tegtmeier G, Chamberland M, Parise M. Transfusion- transmitted malaria in the United States from 1963 through 1999. New England Journal of Medicine 2001; 344: 1973-1978.
  10. Frey-Wettstein M, Maier A, Markwalder K, Munch U. A case of transfusion transmitted malaria in Switzerland. Swiss Medical Weekly 2001; 131: 320 .
  11. Okocha EC, Ibeh CC, Ele PU, Ibeh NC. The prevalence of malaria parasitaemia in blood donors in a Nigerian teaching hospital. Journal of Vector Borne Diseases 2005; 42: 21-24.
  12. Bove JR. Transfusion-transmitted diseases other than AIDS and hepatitis. Yale Journal of Biolology and Medicine 1990; 63: 347- 351.
  13. Kaur P, Basu S. Transfusion-transmitted infections: Existing and emerging pathogens. Journal of Postgraduate Medicine 2005; 51: 146-151 .
  14. Guerrero IC, Weniger BG, Schultz MG. Transfusion malaria in the United States, 1972-1981. Annals of Internal Medicine 1983; 99: 221-226.
  15. Schreiber GB, Busch MP, Kleinman SH, Korelitz JJ. The risk of transfusion-transmitted viral infections. New England Journal of Medicine 1996; 334: 1685-1690;.
  16. Chiavetta JA, Maki E, Gula CA, and Newman A. Estimated risk of Transfusion Transmitted infection in the Canadian blood supply (1987-1996). Vox Sanguinis 2000; 78 (Suppl. 1): P360 (abstract).
  17. Blajchman MA. Reducing the risk of bacterial contamination of cellular blood components. Developments in Biologicals. 2000; 102: 183-193.
  18. World Health Organization. Diagnosis and management of severe falciparum malaria. Tutor's Guide. Geneva, WHO, 2002.
  19. Dacie JV, Lewis SM. Practical Haematology. 8 th edition. Edinburgh, Churchill Livingstone, 1994.
  20. Ibhanesebho SE, Otobo ES, Ladipo OA.Prevalence of malaria parasitaemia in transfused donor blood in Benin City Nigeria. Annals of Tropical Paediatrics 1996; 16: 93-5.
  21. Ali MS, Yousif AG, Mustafa MS, Ibrahim MH. Evaluation of malaria parasite screening procedures among Sudanese blood donors. Clinical and Laboratory Science 2005; 18:69-73.
  22. Bruce-Chwatt LT. Transfusion malaria revisited. Tropical Disease Bulletin 1982; 79: 827- 840.
  23. Enosolease M E, Imarengiage C O, Awodu OA. Donor blood procurement and utilization of the University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin. Africa Journal of Reproductive Health. 2004; 8: 59-63.
  24. Bonilla E, Rodriguez A. Determining malaria effects in rural Colombia. Social Science and Medicine 1993; 37:1109-1114.
  25. Vlassoff C, Bonilla E. Gender-related differences in the impact of tropical disease on women: what we know. Journal of Biosocial Science 1994; 26:37-53.
  26. Facer CA, Brown J. ABO blood groups and falciparum malaria. Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 1979; 73: 599-600.
  27. Martin SK, Miller LH, Hicks CU, David-West A, Ugbode C, Deane M. Frequency of blood group antigens in Nigerian children with falciparum malaria. Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 1979; 73: 216- 218.
  28. Montoya F, Restrepo M, Montoya AE, Rojas W. Blood groups and malaria. Revista da Instituto Medicina Tropica de Sao Paulo 1994; 36: 33-38.
  29. Gupta M, Chowdhuri ANR. Relationship between ABO blood groups and Malaria. Bulletin of the World Health Organisation 1980; 58:913-915.
  30. Carlson J, Wahlgren M. Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte rosetting is mediated by promiscuous lectin-like inter-actions. Experimental Medicine 1992; 176: 1311- 1317.
  31. Udomsangpetch R, Todd J, Carlson J, Greenwood BM. The effects of hemoglobin genotype and ABO blood group on the formation of rosettes by Plasmodium falciparum-infected red blood cells. American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 1993; 48: 149-153.
  32. Fischer P R. and Boone P. Short Report: Severe Malaria Associated With Blood Group. American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 1998; 58:122- 123.
  33. Achidi EA, Perlmann H, Berzins K. Asymptomatic malaria parasitaemia and seroreactivities to Plasmodium falciparum antigens in blood donors from Ibadan, southwestern Nigeria. Annals of Tropical Medicine and Parasitology 1995; 89:601-610.
  34. Vimala, R. All about blood. Available at: Blood Centres of the Pacific:; 2005.
  35. Hansher EO, Mand J E. Financing blood transfusion services in sub-Saharan Africa: a role user fees? Health Policy and Plan 2000; 15: 287-275.


Download data is not yet available.