An update on concurrent malaria and typhoid fever in Cameroon

Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 1999 Mar-Apr;93(2):127-9. doi: 10.1016/s0035-9203(99)90282-1.


Malaria and typhoid fever are endemic diseases in Cameroon, with overlapping signs and symptoms. While the high prevalence of malaria is an established fact, it is only within the past 5 years that an unusually high number of illnesses have been diagnosed as malaria co-existing with typhoid fever. The Widal test is widely used as the sole laboratory test for the diagnosis of typhoid fever. To investigate the extent of the malaria and typhoid fever association, we used blood and stool cultures as additional diagnostic tests for typhoid fever. We report that, of 200 patients presenting with fever, 17.0% had concurrent malaria and typhoid fever (Salmonella typhi) based on bacteriological proven diagnosis as compared with 47.9% based on the Widal test. A higher proportion of patients (32.5%) had malaria coexisting with S. typhimurium when compared to S. paratyphi (2%) and S. typhi (P < 0.05). We conclude that the number of fever cases diagnosed as malaria co-existing with typhoid fever is overestimated.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cameroon / epidemiology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Comorbidity
  • Feces / microbiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Malaria, Falciparum / blood
  • Malaria, Falciparum / diagnosis
  • Malaria, Falciparum / epidemiology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Salmonella paratyphi A / isolation & purification
  • Salmonella typhi / isolation & purification
  • Salmonella typhimurium / isolation & purification
  • Typhoid Fever / diagnosis
  • Typhoid Fever / epidemiology*