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[afro-nets] HIV through a tooth brush? (3)

  • From: David Gisselquist <david_gisselquist@yahoo.com>
  • Date: Thu, 8 Feb 2007 05:30:02 -0800 (PST)

HIV through a tooth brush? (3)

Dear Colleagues,

This is unfortunate. With ARVs improving over time, the children
and family and maid may be fine. But the infections are
unnecessary and avoidable, and they may point to risks for
others in the community.

Sharing toothbrushes with the maid is a possible source of
infection, but a more likely source is invasive health care.
This is something that the Nigerian health authorities could and
should check out. Sequence the viruses from the 3 children. My
guess is that that they would all be different, showing
different sources. My guess is that both children (and possibly
the maid) were infected during a medical injection, dental care,
blood test, or other invasive health care. This is important to
know, because if the children did not acquire HIV infection from
sharing toothbrushes, how did they get it?

Maybe the church and local newspapers and others with media
connections could support the parents to ask that the government
check it out.

Why check it out? Because if no one looks when you smell smoke,
the house might burn down. An unexplained HIV infection is an
indication that health care might be unsafe. Hundreds of
children have been reported in Africa with HIV infections but
with HIV-negative mothers. But there have been NO, NOT ONE
investigation to find where these infections came from, and to
find other children infected through the same clinic, and to
stop the rolling disaster.

When a few children with HIV infection and HIV-negative mothers
turned up in Kazakhstan last year, the government investigated -
- testing 10,000 children who had visited hospitals in Shymkent,
and finding 87 infected children. In 1988-89, Russian
authorities investigated an unexplained HIV infection in a child
-- and found more than 250 children with linked infections
passed through hospitals.

If no one looks when clinics have been infecting children and
others, how will it stop?

Best regards,

David Gisselquist