Chagas Disease - The New HIV/AIDS? - U2 Feedback

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Old 05-31-2012, 07:23 PM   #1
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Chagas Disease - The New HIV/AIDS?

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Chagas disease, caused by parasites transmitted to humans by blood-sucking insects, has been named “the new AIDS of the Americas” in a lengthy editorial published in PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases.

The authors, several of whom are tropical disease experts from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, argue that the dangerous spread of Chagas through this hemisphere somewhat resembles the early spread of H.I.V.

Chagas is also known as American trypanosomiasis, because the bugs carry single-celled parasites called trypanosomes. (Their best-known relative, spread by tsetse flies in Africa, causes sleeping sickness.

Like AIDS, the authors say, Chagas disease has a long incubation time and is hard or impossible to cure. Chagas infects up to eight million people in the hemisphere, mostly in Bolivia, Mexico, Colombia and Central America. But more than 300,000 of the infected live in the United States, many of them immigrants.

The disease can be transmitted from mother to child or by blood transfusion. About a quarter of its victims eventually will develop enlarged hearts or intestines, which can fail or burst, causing sudden death. Treatment involves harsh drugs taken for up to three months and works only if the disease is caught early.

The drugs are not as expensive as AIDS drugs, but there are shortages in poor countries. Because it is a disease of the poor, little money is spent on finding new treatments.

“Both diseases are highly stigmatizing,” the editorial noted. Immigrants may not get medical treatment, making Chagas more likely to spread.
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/29/sc...icas.html?_r=2


Yikes!
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Old 05-31-2012, 07:35 PM   #2
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Some people believe that Charles Darwin may have acquired Chagas Disease during his travels.
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Old 05-31-2012, 08:41 PM   #3
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I've never heard of it. Scary.
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Old 05-31-2012, 09:19 PM   #4
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I'd say it's not going to be the new HIV/AIDS because it's not going to have some sort of "gay cancer" stigma around it that prevails for far too long.
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Old 05-31-2012, 09:30 PM   #5
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I agree with that, but I wouldn't be surprised if those who are against immigration and the rising Hispanic population in America will use this disease to stigmatize Hispanics. Meaning, "don't let them in! they are diseased!"
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Old 05-31-2012, 09:38 PM   #6
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I remember when SARS and then bird flu were going to shut down the world. I distinctly remember it because I read once that "the h2n5 virus could mean the cessation of the AFL season".
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Old 05-31-2012, 10:31 PM   #7
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Rage Flu All The Rage Nowadays, Say Stampeding Hordes
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Old 05-31-2012, 11:00 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pearl View Post
I agree with that, but I wouldn't be surprised if those who are against immigration and the rising Hispanic population in America will use this disease to stigmatize Hispanics. Meaning, "don't let them in! they are diseased!"
That came to my mind, too .

Yeah, saw that on Yahoo! today. It sounds frightening.
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Old 06-01-2012, 12:14 AM   #9
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This week I'm much more concerned about face-eating zombies in Miami.
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Old 06-01-2012, 12:25 PM   #10
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AIDS is AIDS and in my opinion nothing can replace AIDS or be the new AIDS. Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome and Chagas Disease are what they are: terrible, incurable diseases. Nothing more, nothing less.
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Old 06-01-2012, 05:23 PM   #11
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I agree with that, but I wouldn't be surprised if those who are against immigration and the rising Hispanic population in America will use this disease to stigmatize Hispanics.
All legal immigrants are screened for communicable diseases. Is that racist or xenophobic?

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Meaning, "don't let them in! they are diseased!"
Tuberculoses, leprosy, bed bugs, SARS and chagas are a few of the infectious diseases all but irradiated or unknown in N America until (re)introduced by travelers or immigrants. It's fair to point out that quarantine laws have been used in the past against certain people but there are often very real medical and public health reasons for travel and immigration restrictions.

And it's sensationalist to call chagas "the new AIDS." It was years before we understood the viral nature of HIV and longer before we had any effective treatment.
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Old 06-01-2012, 05:45 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by INDY500 View Post
All legal immigrants are screened for communicable diseases. Is that racist or xenophobic?



Tuberculoses, leprosy, bed bugs, SARS and chagas are a few of the infectious diseases all but irradiated or unknown in N America until (re)introduced by travelers or immigrants. It's fair to point out that quarantine laws have been used in the past against certain people but there are often very real medical and public health reasons for travel and immigration restrictions.

And it's sensationalist to call chagas "the new AIDS." It was years before we understood the viral nature of HIV and longer before we had any effective treatment.
If you ask me, America has let in too many immigrants from Mexico. I don't know what Bush and Obama have discussed in their meetings or summits or phone chats with however the presidente of Mexico is, I don't know his name and I don't care, he is obviously incompetent - but whatever it is, it isn't in the best interests of the existing American people that the American president is supposed to represent.
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