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Treatment of Fever Due to Malaria With Ibuprofen

This study has been completed.
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier:
First Posted: September 14, 2005
Last Update Posted: December 9, 2005
The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details.
Information provided by:
Albert Schweitzer Hospital
Drugs to treat fever are widely used in children with fever. But there is a controversy about the benefit of reducing fever in children with malaria. Ibuprofen is often used to treat malarial fever. This study evaluates the capacity of ibuprofen to reduce fever in malaria. The effect of ibuprofen on fever compared to only mechanical measures is investigated in children with malaria.

Condition Intervention Phase
Fever Drug: Ibuprofen Phase 4

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Double
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Randomised, Double-Blind, Placebo Controlled Study of the Antipyretic Effect of Ibuprofen in Children With Uncomplicated Malaria

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Albert Schweitzer Hospital:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Fever clearance time
  • Fever time
  • Area under the fever curve

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Parasite clearance time
  • Adverse event during the entire study period

Estimated Enrollment: 50
Study Start Date: April 2003
Estimated Study Completion Date: January 2004
Detailed Description:

Fever is the most apparent clinical manifestation of Plasmodium falciparum infection during the acute phase. The role of fever in defence against malaria or in other infectious diseases remains unclear. However, it has been shown that febrile temperatures inhibit the growth of P. falciparum in vitro.

Antipyretic drugs are commonly and widely used to treat malarial fever in endemic areas. There is however a controversy about the benefit of reducing fever in children with malaria. Data from Gabon have revealed that neither paracetamol, nor naproxen or metamizol - antipyretics often used in this area - had an effect on fever clearance time. Worryingly, paracetamol increased parasite-clearance times (i.e. inhibited clearance of parasites) and decreased significantly the production of oxygen radicals and tumour necrosis factor (TNF), mechanisms of the innate immune response, pivotal to combat infections.

Another antipyretic drug often used to treat malarial fever in endemic areas is ibuprofen. However, the rationale of its use and its capacity of reducing fever due to P. falciparum infections has never been proven in this area.

Comparison: The effect of ibuprofen plus mechanical fever “treatment” (continuous fanning, tepid sponging, and cooling blankets) is compared to mechanical treatment alone to treat fever in children with malaria.


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Ages Eligible for Study:   2 Years to 7 Years   (Child)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Uncomplicated falciparum malaria
  • Asexual parasitaemia between 20,000 and 200,000/µL
  • Fever with temperature above 38 °C or history of fever during the preceding 24 hours
  • Informed consent

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Effective anti-malarial treatment for the present attack
  • Antipyretic use within 6 hours of presentation
  • Contraindications to the use of ibuprofen (history of asthma, dyspeptic symptoms, gastro-intestinal bleeding, or allergy to ibuprofen)
  • Mixed plasmodial infection
  • Haemoglobin < 7 g/dL
  • Packed-cell volume < 20%
  • White cell count > 16,000/L
  • Platelet count < 40,000/µL
  • Schizontaemia > 50/µL
  • Impaired consciousness
  • Convulsions or history of convulsions
  • Concomitant diseases masking assessment of response
  Contacts and Locations
Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier (NCT number): NCT00167713

Medical research Unit, Lambaréné
Lambaréné, Moyen Ogooué, Gabon, B.P. 118
Sponsors and Collaborators
Albert Schweitzer Hospital
Principal Investigator: Michel A. Missinou, PhD Albert Schweitzer Hospital
  More Information

Additional Information:
Publications automatically indexed to this study by ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier (NCT Number):
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00167713     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 04/2003/IBU
First Submitted: September 11, 2005
First Posted: September 14, 2005
Last Update Posted: December 9, 2005
Last Verified: September 2005

Keywords provided by Albert Schweitzer Hospital:

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Protozoan Infections
Parasitic Diseases
Body Temperature Changes
Signs and Symptoms
Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
Analgesics, Non-Narcotic
Sensory System Agents
Peripheral Nervous System Agents
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Anti-Inflammatory Agents
Antirheumatic Agents
Cyclooxygenase Inhibitors
Enzyme Inhibitors
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action