Which Plasmodium species cause malaria?

Updated: Apr 26, 2019
  • Author: Thomas E Herchline, MD; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

The 5 Plasmodium species known to cause malaria in humans are P falciparum, P vivax, P ovale, P malariae, and P knowlesi. [3, 4, 5] Timely identification of the infecting species is extremely important, as P falciparum infection can be fatal and is often resistant to standard chloroquine treatment. P falciparum and P vivax are responsible for most new infections. (See Etiology, Prognosis, Treatment, and Medication.)


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