Kerryn Moore (The University of Melbourne / Burnet Institute / Shoklo Malaria Research Unit) talks about her research on the impact of malaria in pregnancy on birth outcomes in Asia.
Thanks to Kerryn for providing the video.
My name is Kerryn, I'm an Epidemiologist and during my PhD I studied the impact of malaria during pregnancy and its treatment on birth outcomes, particularly in the Asia region.
I found no evidence that treatment of first trimester Malaria with artemisinin's further increased the risk of miscarriage or congenital malformation compared to the current recommended treatment.
This finding was significant because artemisinin's are the most effective anti-malarias available but they are not given in the first trimester because of the mitten evidence on their safety. I also found that malaria in pregnancy was twice as likely to be associated with stillbirth in areas of low transmissions such as Asia, compared to areas of high transmission. This highlighted the need to sustain interventions for malaria in pregnancy even after transmission in the general population has declined.
My findings influenced world health organisation guidelines, firstly on the treatment of malaria in pregnancy; and secondly on control and prevention interventions for malaria in pregnancy in Asia.