Congenital Plasmodium vivax malaria mimicking neonatal sepsis: a case report

Malar J. 2010 Mar 1;9:63. doi: 10.1186/1475-2875-9-63.


Although malaria in pregnancy can cause very significant neonatal morbidity, congenital malaria is a very rare condition in both endemic and non-endemic areas. A case of congenital malaria by Plasmodium vivax, initially mistaken for neonatal sepsis, is described. The correct diagnosis was accidentally done, as congenital malaria had been missed in the initial differential diagnosis.Vivax malaria is the leading species in congenital infections in Europe. This condition should be included in the differential diagnosis of neonatal sepsis even if the mother has no proven malarial episodes during the gestational period.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Antimalarials / therapeutic use
  • Chloroquine / therapeutic use
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidental Findings
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infectious Disease Transmission, Vertical
  • Malaria, Vivax / congenital*
  • Malaria, Vivax / diagnosis
  • Malaria, Vivax / drug therapy
  • Plasmodium vivax / isolation & purification*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Parasitic / diagnosis
  • Pregnancy Complications, Parasitic / drug therapy
  • Sepsis / congenital
  • Sepsis / diagnosis
  • Sepsis / drug therapy
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Antimalarials
  • Chloroquine