my husband has been taking coartem for 3 days now. He was fine yesterday and then last night the symptoms re-appeared like it was day one. Can I carry on with coartem and start another course? Or shall I switch to something else ? If so, what? We live in zambia by the way.
Thank you for your help.
If your husband still has strong symptoms after taking all doses of the Coartem, go back to see your doctor or to the clinic for another blood test. If it is positive, then your doctor may recommend trying a different form of anti-malarial medication—artemisinin-based combination therapy (a group of medications that includes Coartem) is recommended as the first-line treatment against malaria, but a second line option could be atovaquone-proguanil (Malarone) or another medication. Please note that Fansidar (sulfadoxine and pyrimethamine) and chloroquine are not recommended for use in Africa as levels of resistance are high.
It could be that the medication hasn’t had time to fully act, which is why it is important to wait until the full dose has been taken, and then to confirm that malaria is still present. Sometimes the side effects of anti-malarials can appear similar to malaria itself, such as nausea, chills, body aches, etc, so it is important not to start another course of treatment without further diagnosis.
We are actually very interested in learning about our readers’ experiences with anti-malarial medications, and so we would be very grateful if you might be able to take a few minutes to complete our malaria survey we are running on Malaria.com. We will post any findings that may be of interest to our readership on Malaria.com later this year—all submissions are completely anonymous. Many thanks for your time and help, and I hope your husband recovers fully soon.