The need-to-know information for Primaquine


Pearls and Fun Nuggets

1. Primaquine is usually taken during the last 1-2 weeks of other malaria treatment.  It’s primarily used to prevent relapse of malaria due to Plasmodium vivax and Plasmodium ovale.[9] It eliminates hypnozoites, the dormant liver form of the parasite,[10] after the organisms have been cleared from the bloodstream.[9]

2. If you don’t take it, beware the consequences 😳  If primaquine is not administered to patients with proven P. vivax or P. ovale infection, a very high likelihood of relapse exists for weeks or months (sometimes years).[9]

3. Primaquine has been around for a while 📰 Primaquine was first made by Robert Elderfield of Columbia University in the 1940s as part of a coordinated effort led by the Office of Scientific Research and Development in World War II to develop anti-malarial drugs to protect and treat soldiers fighting in the Pacific theater.[11][17]

4. Be careful not to take too much 💊 Overdosing can reduce the number of function of various kinds of blood cells, including loss of red blood cells, methemoglobinemia, and loss of white blood cells.[13]

Patient Perspectives

Brandon Simpson, PA-C
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