Taxonomy: f. Plasmodidae
Animal: Plasmodium malariae 5 13.jpg
Sites: Blood
Plasmodium malariae schizont in thick film - note 6 - 12 merozoites and abundant dark brown pigment in centre. It is important to examine both thick and thin films and when the clinical indications and history of the patient are strong, that repeat blood collections be made before ruling out a malaria infection as P. malariae infections may have very low parasitaemias, especially as this parasite only invades older red cells limiting the proportion of red cells it can invade. Finger prick collection is preferred as anticoagulant can distort the parasites. Accurate species identification is essential for correct treatment to be administered. (See parasitology textbooks such as Garcia and Bruckner 1997 for details)

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