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Nosocomial Transmission of HIV in Africa: What Tribute Is Paid to Contaminated Blood Transfusions and Medical Injections?

Philippe Lepage and Philippe Van de Perre
Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology
Vol. 9, No. 5 (May, 1988), pp. 200-203
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/30146444
Page Count: 4
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Nosocomial Transmission of HIV in Africa: What Tribute Is Paid to Contaminated Blood Transfusions and Medical Injections?
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Abstract

We reviewed the published data on the possible impact of medical injections and blood transfusions on the spread of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in Africa. We also compared these results to our experience in Rwanda, central Africa. The importance of medical injections in the epidemic of HIV infection seems to differ from one area to another. The excess of injections experienced by HIV seropositive subjects in Zaire could be secondary to the parenteral treatment of early HIV-related illness or to the treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, rather than being the cause of HIV infection, as suggested by Rwandese studies. In contrast, blood transfusions have been shown to represent an important source of nosocomial HIV infection in many African countries. Effective and relatively inexpensive measures to diminish the iatrogenic spread of HIV infection in developing countries are summarized.

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