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Malaria Symptoms | Symptoms of Malaria

Home > Safari Planner > About Malaria > Signs and Symptoms of Malaria

In the UK, about 2 thousand people a year get Malaria when traveling abroad and that is why it is important to know what the Symptoms of Malaria are, especially if you plan on traveling to a malaria risk zone. Malaria shouldn't be a reason not to go traveling, so long as you take the right steps to make sure you don't get it. Remember it is always better to take steps in preventing malaria, rather than treating the illness.

The most common Malaria Symptoms:

To the patient, the first signs of the Symptoms often seem like you have the Flu. The symptoms can appear any time after you are bitten by a mosquito carrying the malaria parasite, but it usually takes about six days for the Malaria symptom to appear.

  • Headache
  • Aching Muscles
  • Weakness or lack of energy

Other symptoms of Malaria that may occur a day or so later:
  • Fever - your temperature may rise up to 40°C
  • Severe headache
  • Cough
  • Chills
  • Stomach pains
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting which can often mislead people into thinking they have some other disease


Alternatively the fever and chills could be due to an infection not specific to the area being visited such as the flu or other viruses.

What to do if you think you have Maleria:

If you have traveled to a malaria region or zone in the last year and you have an illness with a fever, you should visit your GP. It is important to stress that you can still catch malaria even if you have taken anti malarial medicines correctly.

What if you develop Symptoms where there is no Medical Help Available?
As a general rule, if you develop a fever in malaria risk area or you have passed through a malaria risk area and there is no medical help available, then start a course of treatment as advised by your health care provider or physician prior to your departure.

Remember - Malaria can take weeks or months to develop after being bitten. Even if the treatment appears to be working you should still seek medical attention as soon as possible.

This may also be a good time to stress that malaria is not the only potential problem or disease one may encounter while adventuring to malaria endemic regions and the information regarding bite avoidance can reduce the risk of a range of other tropical diseases as well.

For more about Malaria, see Malaria Medication: Tablets & Pills and what exactly is malaria?

Note: The information about malaria and advice published or made available through the Safari-Guide web site is provided for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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