[Knowledge and treatment of malaria in rural Senegal].Med Trop (Mars). 1997; 57(2):161-4.MT
Evaluating knowledge about the diagnosis and treatment of malaria is a prerequisite for both understanding the development of chemoresistance and improving ongoing programs of chemotherapy and chemoprophylaxis. To gain such knowledge we distributed a questionnaire to 900 household heads in twelve villages in the M'Backe district of Senegal. Awareness of the main symptoms of malaria was satisfactory in comparison with previous references. Public health care facilities such as dispensaries were cited as the first resort for treatment by 72.6% of respondents. Chloroquine was mentioned as the first line antimalarial by 23% of respondents who practiced self-medication. Improper dosages were stated by 60% of the respondents. A total of 52.3% of respondents practiced chemoprophylaxis mainly using chloroquine. In 65.8% of cases antimalarial drugs were obtained from public health care units but drugs were purchased on the market in 15.7% of cases. These findings indicate the threefold Bamako initiative should be reinforced and that a campaign should be undertaken to educate people living in rural areas about malaria.