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Malaria, Geography of

  • By: Eric D. Carter
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

Malaria is an infectious, vector-borne disease caused by the plasmodium parasite, which is spread from person to person by the anopheles mosquito. Acute symptoms of the disease include high fever, chills, headache, and fatigue, with common complications such as coma, anemia, and liver damage. Historically, malaria was widespread globally, but today it is confined mainly to the tropics, where it continues to exact a high toll on human health and development, with approximately 1 million deaths annually, countless infections and complications, and associated social and economic burdens. The vast majority of malarial infections and deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa, as well as in tropical South and Central America, and South and Southeast Asia. The geography of malaria can be understood as the interaction between three ...

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