I believe my fiance who lives in Kenya has malaria but refuses to go for a test. She has headaches and now flu like symptoms. I am returning in late December, if the symptoms have gone can I still take her for a blood test to see if malaria is still present even if the symptoms subside?
Most malaria diagnosis in Kenya is done by looking at a small sample of the patient’s blood under the microscope. Unfortunately, using this method, it is almost impossible to detect malaria that is non-symptomatic. In this case, one option would be to use a rapid diagnostic test which looks for antibodies in the blood against malaria – as these antibodies can sometimes persist after the infection has subsided, it can sometimes tell you whether that person recently had malaria. These rapid diagnostic tests are available in most of the main cities in Kenya, in larger pharmacies, and maybe even in some big supermarkets like Nakumatt. However, given how rapidly malaria can progress and how serious is can become, I would highly recommend that your girlfriend goes to a clinic or doctor and has a malaria test! That way she can receive treatment early, before her symptoms get worse.