Acute respiratory distress syndrome complicating Plasmodium vivax malaria

Crit Care Med. 2001 Mar;29(3):665-7. doi: 10.1097/00003246-200103000-00037.


Malaria is one of the most common infectious diseases in the world, and severe respiratory complications have been described mainly in association with Plasmodium falciparum. We describe a case of acute respiratory distress syndrome complicating infection with P. vivax in the setting of relatively low parasitemia in a 47-yr-old woman after a brief trip to Papua New Guinea. A review of the literature shows that pulmonary complications of P. vivax are rare but occur more frequently than generally acknowledged. Pathogenic mechanisms of these complications are discussed.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Antimalarials / therapeutic use
  • Blood Gas Analysis
  • Boston
  • Critical Care / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Malaria, Vivax / blood
  • Malaria, Vivax / complications*
  • Malaria, Vivax / diagnosis
  • Malaria, Vivax / parasitology
  • Malaria, Vivax / therapy
  • Mefloquine / therapeutic use
  • Middle Aged
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Positive-Pressure Respiration
  • Pulmonary Gas Exchange
  • Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Adult / diagnosis
  • Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Adult / parasitology*
  • Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Adult / therapy
  • Travel


  • Antimalarials
  • Mefloquine