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Cerebrospinal-fluid (CSF) lactate concentrations were elevated in all but 1 of 45 patients with cerebral malaria. They were significantly higher in patients who died (9.0 +/- 5.3 mmol/l, mean +/- SD) than in survivors (3.4 +/- 1.1 mmol/l, p = 0.0002) and had returned to normal values in each of 9 patients studied after recovery of consciousness. There was a significant negative correlation between CSF lactate and CSF glucose. All 11 patients with CSF lactate concentrations above 6 mmol/l died. CSF lactate is thus an important prognostic indicator in cerebral malaria and these findings suggest that hypoxia contributes to the pathogenesis of this disorder.


Journal article



Publication Date





776 - 778


Adolescent, Adult, Brain, Brain Diseases, Child, Female, Glucose, Humans, Lactates, Malaria, Male, Middle Aged, Plasmodium falciparum, Prognosis