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Clinical trial of artesunate and artemether on multidrug resistant falciparum malaria in Thailand. A preliminary report.

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  • 1Department of Clinical Tropical Medicine, Bangkok Hospital for Tropical Diseases, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Thailand.


A 5-day course of oral artesunate at total doses of 1200, 600, 650 mg and intramuscular artemether 480 mg proved effective (90-100% cured) in the treatment of multidrug resistant falciparum malaria in Thailand. Shorter courses yielded high recrudescence rates. The fever clearance and parasite clearance times were short. The side effects were mild and transient including occasional abnormal electrocardiograms and pain at the injection site. Slight reduction of neutrophil leucocytes and reticulocytes was observed. Further studies of artesunate and artemether should be carried out to find the optimum dosage regimen and to clarify the hematological effects.

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