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Rumor: Cheryl “diagnosed with malaria”
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Cheryl Tweedy Cole

Cheryl Cole is in hospital after having caught malaria during a holiday in Tanzania three weeks ago, it was reported last night.

The singer was initially diagnosed with exhaustion after collapsing during a photoshoot for her forthcoming record release on Saturday. She was admitted to a Surrey hospital after her condition worsened considerably the next day.

“Cheryl hadn’t been feeling herself for about a week [after returning on 22 June]. She was feeling tired and listless. In the end, this must have been the beginnings of the virus,” a friend told the Daily Mail. “During Sunday afternoon, Cheryl went downhill quickly. She was sweating and shaking and in a bad way.”

Cole is expected to stay in hospital for several days and could take several weeks to recover, raising doubts over her involvement in the rest of the latest series of The X Factor.

“Following doctors’ advice, Cheryl Cole will be cancelling all work commitments for the next week,” a spokesman for the singer said.

Cole has thrown herself into a gruelling schedule since her very public breakup with England football player Ashley Cole. She has recorded a solo album as well as taking part in The X Factor with Simon Cowell, the show’s creator.

The 27-year-old singer went to Tanzania for a break from her work three weeks ago. Doctors believe she contracted the virus there after being bitten by a mosquito. British tourists increasingly travel to countries where malaria is prevalent and every year about 2,000 Britons return home with malaria, making the UK one of the biggest importers of malaria in the industrialised world. An average of nine people die each year from malaria in the UK.

Malaria is transmitted by an infected mosquito and it only takes one bite from an infected mosquito to contract the disease. The most severe form of malaria (plasmodium falciparum) is on the increase amongst British travellers. A preventable infection, malaria can be fatal if left untreated.

Cheryl’s reps have not yet confirmed this story, so for now it’s a rumor. Everyone please pray for or send positive vibes to Cheryl and hope for a speedy recovery for whatever is ailing her.


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