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Malaria relapse has a specific meaning in regards to malaria and refers to the reactivation of the infection via hypnozoites. Relapse is when symptoms reappear after the parasites have been eliminated from blood but persist as dormant hypnozoites in liver cells.
Malaria relapse commonly occurs between 8–24 weeks and is commonly seen with P. vivax and P. ovale infections.P. vivax malaria cases in temperate areas often involve overwintering by hypnozoites, with relapses beginning the year after the mosquito bite.