Transfusion-transmissible malaria (TTM) is a major concern in malaria endemic countries. A study was therefore conducted to know sero-prevalence of malaria in blood donors and the risk of TTM to multi-transfused patients at our hospital.
Materials and Methods:
Study subjects were: eligible blood donors (n = 1000), donors deferred due to history of fever in the last 3 months (n = 100), and multi-transfused patients (n = 200). Screening for malaria was done by slide microscopy, immunochromatographic rapid diagnostic test (RDT) for malaria antigen, and anti-malaria antibody by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay.
Malaria antibody prevalence in eligible donors and donors with history of fever, thalassemia patients, and in other multi-transfused patients was 16.9%, 22%, 6%, and 15%, respectively. None of the donors were positive for malaria on microscopic examination. None of the blood donors except one donor with history of fever, tested positive with RDT.
Malaria antibody prevalence in blood donors at our center is high. As blood units donated by such donors have high-risk potential, special processing may be undertaken to reduce the risk of TTM.