Dirty water parasite and African AIDS

People with filariasis [caused by roundworm infection] compared to those who did not have filariasis had a 3.2 fold increased risk of HIV infection in the age group 14 to 25 years and a 2.4 fold increased risk in the age group 25 to 45 years. Those over 45 years had a 1.2 fold increased risk.

Is it unreasonable to think better provision of clean water would avert AIDS?

[Source: EurekAltert!]

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Prior immunodeficiency leads to immunodeficiency… who’d have thought it?!

In un-shock-horror-news, vitamin D deficiency – a state mumbling-ly acknowledged as immunodeficiency – is thought to help the immunodeficiency caused by “HIV”. But when not deficient, “HIV” has a harder time expressing itself. So, in some cases at least, the core immunodeficiency to worry about is vitamin D dearth; and given that “HIV” is not proven to do anything, vitamin D is one of those things, like good food and clean water access, and abstention from hard drug use, that really makes or breaks the immune system.

Read the article here.

Then buy my book, perhaps?

Seropositivity declaration for financial assistance

Some healthy people in Kamuli district are claiming to be HIV-positive so as to get money and goats from non governmental organisations.

When the majority of incoming money is shoved into the mouth of the AIDS monster, how else can one get a share of the pie than to walk into its cage?

Others register their children as orphans of HIV/Aids victims, to get sponsorship from charity organisations. This was announced on Monday by the National Forum for People Living with HIV Networks in Uganda (NAFOPHANU), Kamuli branch.

Registration of children of phantom AIDS victims will lead the parents to be assigned as ghosts; counted as part of AIDS death statistics. Yet, could one blame parents for this tactic if it results in a better life for their children? A rigged system deserves contempt.

“After learning that Plan [Uganda] was giving support to HIV victims,  [111 HIV-negative people] rushed to the health facility with fake HIV results from private clinics, got registered…,” said Judith Hatoho, the Kamuli NAFOPHANU coordinator.

Just when African statistics weren’t fudged enough by the Bangui definition, non-specific test kits and illogical death estimates, we have desperate people tarring themselves as HIV+ just to get help.

[Source: The Observer (Uganda)]

Slow virologists, not slow viruses, confirmation

…to the great surprise of doctors, there are thousands of teenagers like Tadisa who have lived with HIV for more than a decade.

When Dr Rashida Ferrand wanted to research these young survivors, she was told none were still alive.

“Five years ago people would shake their heads in disbelief and say: ‘Well, no, nobody survives,'” said the HIV expert from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

“Survival beyond five years is considered absolutely exceptional.”

No-one knows exactly why people like Tadisa survived childhood with untreated HIV.

None of this surprises Rethinkers.

“These children are more likely to be poor and to have lost their parents to Aids,” she said. “They’ve been shifted around amongst guardians and missed education, so the odds are stacked against them.”

Poverty, illness…

But children like Tadisa who survived unexpectedly have often gone untreated, and the complications of untreated HIV – such as damage to the lungs and heart – are debilitating.

Since when did heart disease become AIDS-defining? (answer: since ARVs!)

[Source: BBC News]

Insensitive but well-observed

A US public relations executive has provoked a storm of online protest for writing a Twitter comment about Aids in Africa.

Justine Sacco, who works for the media company IAC, wrote: “Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get Aids. Just kidding. I’m white!”

Ms Sacco’s account has now been deleted.

IAC responded by saying the “outrageous, offensive comment” did not reflect the company’s views and values.

“Unfortunately, the employee in question is unreachable on an international flight, but this is a very serious matter and we are taking appropriate action,” the IAC said in a statement to the media blog Valleywag.

IAC is the parent company of Match.com, The Daily Beast, Dictionary.com and BlackPeopleMeet.com, a dating site for African-Americans.

Though insensitive, Sacco was perversely correct. How big an issue is HIV/AIDS among the non-impoverished white African community? Not very. The problem is the conditions within class. It’s nothing to do with race and uncontrollable lust.

[Source: BBC News]