AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

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AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by DJKeefy »

The number of Egyptians who died from HIV/AIDs doubled between 2005 and 2013, rising from 500 to 1,000, according to a new report from UNAIDS.

Egypt’s first case of AIDS, or Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, was detected in 1986. Since 1990, the number of cases has climbed by 286%, reaching around 14,000 cases in 2012, UNAIDS reported.

Egypt’s death rate is one of the fastest rising in the region, but the country’s AIDS-related deaths still only represent about 3% of total deaths in the Middle East and North Africa.

Across the MENA region, about 15,000 people died of AIDs-related causes in 2013, which is a 66% increase from 2005. In the region, 30% of AIDS-related deaths occurred in Iran, 21% occurred in Sudan and 17% took place in Somalia.

The ratio of male to female cases is 4:1. HIV/AIDS is most common among prisoners, street children, drug users and sex workers, according to NAP (National AIDS Programme). More than 71% of the cases were transmitted through sexual intercourse, but the virus can also spread in other ways, including through blood transfusion and unhygienic cosmetology or dental work.

In Egypt, where 95% of the population is Muslim and premarital sex is a taboo, families often look down on victims as “shameful”, rather than being compassionate – even if the disease was not contracted through sexual intercourse, said Doctor Ahmed Khamis, Egypt country coordinator for UNAIDS.

Instead of treating the patient, families may try to hide their “shame” by keeping their condition a secret until it’s too late, or they may even get rid of their children, he said.

The disease, caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), can be transmitted by any contact of a carrier’s body fluid. An infected individual can remain without symptoms for up to 10 years, as the disease slowly attacks the immune system, making it vulnerable and susceptible to almost any kind of infection. There is also no known cure for HIV, only medications that reinforce the immune system.

Medication to treat HIV/AIDS varies in price, with an average cost of $1,000 per month, Khamis said. However, through the Ministry of Health, patients can obtain free treatment.

Still, less than 20% of infected Egyptians have access to treatment, UNAIDS reported.

A number of non-governmental organisations, such as UNAIDS, are cooperating with the Egyptian government to spread awareness about the disease and encourage voluntary laboratory tests for early detection.

Source: http://www.dailynewsegypt.com/2014/08/1 ... ble-egypt/


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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by jewel »

Well it keeps the population numbers down - a la Malthus.
"The power of population is so superior to the power of the earth to produce subsistence for man, that premature death must in some shape or other visit the human race. The vices of mankind are active and able ministers of depopulation. They are the precursors in the great army of destruction, and often finish the dreadful work themselves. But should they fail in this war of extermination, sickly seasons, epidemics, pestilence, and plague advance in terrific array, and sweep off their thousands and tens of thousands. Should success be still incomplete, gigantic inevitable famine stalks in the rear, and with one mighty blow levels the population with the food of the world".

—Malthus T.R. 1798. An Essay on the Principle of Population. Chapter VII, p 61[4]
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by newcastle »

AIDS = "....the vices of mankind....." (Malthus).

Really?
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by LovelyLadyLux »

Given the stigma associated with AIDS particularly in a country like Egypt I'm always suspicious of statistics related to this disease as I believe many affected may not go and get properly diagnosed and even if they do go (depending on where in Egypt they are) for medical attention the diagnoses may not be accurate.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by Zooropa »

How would you know you had Aids unless you were diagnosed as having it?
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by newcastle »

Zooropa wrote:How would you know you had Aids unless you were diagnosed as having it?
In a nutshell.....you wouldn't.

AIDS is not a disease as such but a descriptive reference (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) to the results of having the body invaded by the HIV virus which destroys the immune system rendering you vulnerable to infections that would not normally be a serious problem. It's not AIDS or the HIV virus which kills but the effects of what would otherwise be relatively harmless infections running riot in a body with a depleted immune system.

Where it originated...on-one knows for sure. But it was first recognised in the gay community in the 1970's & 80's with otherwise healthy young men dying in large numbers from pneumonia and rare forms of cancer. It was at that time that the virus was identified...but it was then already loose in the wider population.

It's a virus only transmitted by exchange of bodily fluids &, with rare exceptions, that means sexual intercourse or intravenous blood exchanges. Its recognition amongst the gay community saw it labelled "the gay plague" but the world was soon to discover that the virus knew no sexual orientation boundaries and its greatest impact has been on sub-Saharan Africa...hardly a hotbed of gay licentiousness.

Being a sexually transmitted virus -and because of its recognition in the gay community - it immediately acquired a stigma. In some communities sex (surely the most natural action of our species) equates somehow with sin & evil....and those infected were generally ostracised (despite the fact that you'd have to exchange bodily fluids with them to become infected).

The stigma & ignorance surrounding HIV & AIDS is particularly prevalent in the third world and societies reluctant to discuss sexual matters. Myth & misinformation are rife.

Persistent infections, failing of organ function etc. may be a symptom of HIV infection but it's a brave Egyptian who would go for an HIV test because of the social ramifications.

This is the tragedy....as undiagnosed carriers of the virus continue to spread it amongst the community. Although the virus cannot(at present) be eliminated, it can be suppressed by anti-retroviral drugs so as to allow the carrier to live a more or less normal life and have a normal sex life with the use of condoms. But the drugs are only available where a diagnosis has been made.....and in Egypt people would be most reluctant to be tested because of this stigma.

Egypt is nurturing a potentially huge problem in this area.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by LovelyLadyLux »

Couldn't have said it better Newcastle :up :up :up (a triple thumbs up to you)
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by Dusak »

I read someplace years ago that the recognized 'ground zero' first authenticated victim was a young South African male in, I think it was, 1969.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by newcastle »

Dusak wrote:I read someplace years ago that the recognized 'ground zero' first authenticated victim was a young South African male in, I think it was, 1969.
Earlier than that Dusak....although given the variants of the virus & its relationship to SIV (Simian Immunodeficiency Virus)it's difficult to be precise.

http://www.cnn.com/HEALTH/9802/03/earliest.aids/

Seems pretty likely it originated somewhere in Africa.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by Robbo70 »

I remember the leaflets and the tv adverts in the 80's? The 'don't die of ignorance' campaign which was very informative and did a good job at the time. I have talked to a couple of Egyptians about AIDS/HIV and the lack of understanding is what will kill them. The majority do seem to think its just a gay disease so they will be ok. I can understand how the numbers are rising in Egypt. They will die of ignorance.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by LovelyLadyLux »

Are condoms easily and readily available in Luxor? Egypt? Can't say I ever noticed them in any stores there but I was never looking for them.

And are condoms something that an Egyptian woman or man could easily purchase in a store or pharmacy? Or would even the purchase bring about questions and stigma?
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by newcastle »

LovelyLadyLux wrote:Are condoms easily and readily available in Luxor? Egypt? Can't say I ever noticed them in any stores there but I was never looking for them.

And are condoms something that an Egyptian woman or man could easily purchase in a store or pharmacy? Or would even the purchase bring about questions and stigma?
Every pharmacy I've seen is stuffed with them.

Don't know about the "stigma" issue...but I do know they're not used much by the poorer Egyptians who just love to have kids! In general I think Egyptian men think birth control...if they want to consider it at all....is a matter for the woman.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by LovelyLadyLux »

I never looked for them so had no idea if they were stocked on the shelves (the easy pick up and into the shopping basket) OR if they're behind the counter where you have to ask for them (not as easy if you're at all embarrassed or sensitive OR STIGMATIZED).

I wonder at the stigma associated with their use let alone the plain old ignorance of the safety they afford during sex be it between women/men or men/men.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by Brian Yare »

LovelyLadyLux wrote:I never looked for them so had no idea if they were stocked on the shelves (the easy pick up and into the shopping basket) OR if they're behind the counter where you have to ask for them (not as easy if you're at all embarrassed or sensitive OR STIGMATIZED).

I wonder at the stigma associated with their use let alone the plain old ignorance of the safety they afford during sex be it between women/men or men/men.
My 'guess' is that they would be considered a luxury out of reach to those who most need them. What price are they compared to a pack of Cleopatra? :cg
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by LovelyLadyLux »

I have no idea what a condom would cost in Luxor, course I don't know how much a condom costs here either.

I'm not sure Egyptians think of the condom as a luxury. I think they do not think about them at all one way or the other. I think they believe Allah is blessing them with a child or not but am not at all sure Egyptians are overly concerned with contraception at all (not in the same way we are with women being the primary users and consumers of contraception here)

I'm also relatively confident that if a woman in Egypt contracted AIDS it would not be by fault of her husband or partner. It would be HER fault and somehow tied to her character being defective.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by Dusak »

There is quite an extensive range of birth control methods available here. I am reliably informed that the ''poor mans'' technique is the practice of coitus interruptus which is a bit of a 'hit and miss' affair if the timing is off.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by Glyphdoctor »

Egyptians don't use condoms for birth control. I don't know how much they cost, but they certainly cannot be cheaper than a strip of birth control pills, which costs little more than 2LE for a month. No need for coitus interruptus (not saying it doesn't happen, just pointing out that contraception is affordable to anyone). Contraception of various kinds is quite common here, as are illegal abortions.

As for AIDS, I doubt anyone would blame it on the woman in Luxor. Everyone knows it is the men who are fooling around with foreigners, who are seen as the source of such illnesses.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by newcastle »

The reluctance of Egyptian men to use condoms and the prevalence of girls/women who've been subjected to FGM (thus increasing the likelihood of transmission during sex) will also enhance the rate at which HIV spreads in the population.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by Dusak »

newcastle wrote:The reluctance of Egyptian men to use condoms and the prevalence of girls/women who've been subjected to FGM (thus increasing the likelihood of transmission during sex) will also enhance the rate at which HIV spreads in the population.
Could you explain as to why this increases the likelihood of transmission? Serious question.
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Re: AIDS-related deaths double in Egypt

Post by Glyphdoctor »

Answers here (mentioned in several places on this page):
http://www.who.int/reproductivehealth/t ... es_fgm/en/
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