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Automated hematology analyzers for flagging malaria

Malaria is a major health problem in the tropical and temperate regions of the world, which poses a significant burden on health expenditure. In India, it is not just confined to the rural areas but is also rampant in urban locales. Prompt and accurate diagnosis is critical for effective management of malaria. Transasia Bio-Medicals Ltd. now offers a flag for p. vivax species of malaria in Erba 5-part differential hematology analyzers.

One of the most used laboratory tests in clinical settings is the complete blood count (CBC), which has a variety of uses, including the assessment of feverish patients who may have malaria. Today, technological advancements in hematology analyzers have led to the reporting of advanced parameters even by the most basic automated analyzers. In fact, several studies conducted on hematology analyzers indicate sensitivities that comply with WHO malaria-diagnostic guidelines, i.e., ≥80 percent in samples with >100 parasites/μL.

Erba H560 and Elite 580 will flag p. vivax cases of malaria
The recent software upgradation in Erba 5-part hematology analyzers now makes it possible for healthcare practitioners to detect, monitor, and manage p. vivax malaria cases, alongside other medical conditions. However, it is essential to emphasize that specific malaria diagnostic tests, such as blood smears or rapid diagnostic tests, are the primary methods for detecting the presence of malaria parasites in clinical practice.

Here are some of the benefits and advantages of 5-part hematology analyzers in this context:

Comprehensive blood assessment. 5-part hematology analyzers provide a comprehensive assessment of a patient’s blood, including red blood cell (RBC) counts, hemoglobin levels, hematocrit, and white blood cell (WBC) counts, and the mathematical indices. While these parameters do not directly detect malaria parasites, they help to identify pathological cases, such as anemia, marrow disorders, sepsis, etc.

Monitoring disease progression. For patients with p. vivax malaria, hematology analyzers can track changes in blood cell counts over time. This information can be valuable in monitoring the progression of the disease and assessing the response to treatment.

Ruling out other conditions. Hematology analyzers can assist in ruling out other medical conditions that may present with similar symptoms as malaria. By providing a broader picture of the patient’s blood health, they aid healthcare providers in making accurate diagnosis.

Supporting healthcare infrastructure. In regions where resources for advanced malaria diagnostic methods (such as PCR) may be limited, 5-part hematology analyzers serve as important diagnostic tools for general health assessments. They are commonly available in healthcare facilities and can contribute to overall patient care.

Efficiency and speed. Hematology analyzers provide rapid results, which can be crucial in emergency situations, or when a quick assessment of a patient’s blood health is needed. This speed can help healthcare providers make timely decisions about patient care.

Routine screening. In areas where malaria is endemic, routine blood screenings using hematology analyzers can help identify individuals with potential malaria-related abnormalities faster. This early detection can lead to further diagnostic testing and timely treatment.

The way forward
A blood test holds the key to every treatment outcome. In the wake of the growing number of blood disorders, hematology testing has become critical. In order to reach out to the patients in need of blood testing, clinicians and manufacturers need to provide solutions that are affordable and give accurate results. This can be done by providing latest technological advancements at affordable rates. And this is where we believe our hematology solutions comprising 3-part and 5-part analyzers can make the difference. While serving the Tier-I cities, we also cater to the laboratories in Tier II–IV cities and towns.

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