[Elimination in South-East Asia? The role of antimalarial drugs].
Artemisinin resistance in P. falciparum is spreading in South East Asia and threatens the recent progresses made in the fight against malaria. A race against time has started to eliminate P.falciparum in this region before it becomes resistant to all available treatments. Antimalarials have a central role in the current elimination programme in eastern Burma on the border with Thailand. The combination of artemether and lumefantrine is used in association with primaquine for the early treatment of clinical cases. The slowly eliminated dihydro-artemisinin and piperaquine is the drug of choice in mass drug administration in the foci of high prevalence of sub-microscopic and asymptomatic infections. Initial results after 18 months of activities are promising: the participation of the population was excellent and there was a sharp reduction of P.falciparum incidence without evidence of worsening resistance.