Post-Transfusion Acquired Malaria Complicating Orthotopic Liver Transplantation

Talabiska, David G.; Komar, Michael J.; Wytock, Dale H.; Rubin, Raymond A.
February 1996
American Journal of Gastroenterology;Feb1996, Vol. 91 Issue 2, p376
Academic Journal
Early infectious complications within the first 3 mouths of orthotopic liver transplantation are common and are associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Here we report the first case of transfusion-acquired malaria in an orthotopic liver transplantation recipient. The patient was found to have Plasmodium ovale malaria during evaluation of a severe febrile illness. The infection was traced to a platelet transfusion and responded to treatment with chloroquine. Risk factors associated with development of malaria infection are identifiable and should be reviewed from the recipient and donor when possible. Routes of infection in the liver transplant patient would include blood products, the organ itself, and resurgence of latent infection. Theoretically, immunosuppression may have an impact on the disease process. Clinicians caring for these patients need to have a high index of suspicion in order to diagnose and treat malaria effectively in the post-transplant setting. Although rare, malaria should be added to the list of pathogens that can infect organ transplant recipients.


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