Gay HIV rate skyrocketing

Bill Weintraub

Bill Weintraub

Gay HIV rate skyrocketing


Study warns of skyrocketing HIV rate

Fri Aug 18, 2006

PlanetOut via Yahoo

SUMMARY: Fifty-eight percent of gay 20-year-olds in the Western world will be HIV-positive by the time they are 60 if current trends hold, a new study asserts.

HIV prevalence is set to skyrocket among gay men in the Western world as they age, a University of Pittsburgh researcher said Thursday at the international AIDS conference in Toronto.

The Pittsburgh study, a review of papers published in journals, indicates that the number of new cases of HIV has been rising by about 1.9 percent each year since 2001, meaning that as gay men as a group get older, more and more of them will become HIV-positive, Agence-France Presse reported.

"Ongoing incidence rates at this level will yield very high HIV prevalence rates within each generation of gay men," University of Pittsburgh researcher Ron Stall told AFP.

Although only one in 12 gay men age 20 was HIV-positive in North America and Europe in 2001, Stall and other researchers project that the rate could rise to one in four by the time they turn 30. At age 60, the projections suggest that 58 percent of the men could be infected.

The numbers are more dire for gay men of color. Four percent of them between the ages of 15 and 22 are currently infected, while 15 percent between the ages of 23 and 29 are infected.

At an average 4 percent annual rate of increase in new infections, three-quarters of black gay men who are now 23-29 will be HIV-positive by the time they are 50.

"It's not a new story; it has been repeated time and again in the literature in the past . . . an almost unbelievable incidence rate," Stall said to AFP. "African-American men who have sex with men suffer among the highest HIV prevalence rates of any risk group in the world."

The report's findings only underscore the need for better ways of preventing HIV infection, instead of just treating its effects.

"HIV is still an incurable disease," Ronald Valdiserri, deputy director of the National Center for HIV at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told AFP. "In the United States, 5 percent (of the budget for HIV) is spent on prevention."

He added: "America is more interested on treating this disease than preventing it. We can't treat our way out of this epidemic, even as a rich country."

[emphases mine]

This story connects with the previous message thread, titled How effective have MSM condom campaigns actually been, in which we talk about how incidence -- the rate of new HIV infections -- leads to ever higher prevalence -- the total number of guys who are infected.

These increases are occurring primarily among younger gay males because the older age groups have been saturated.

In other words, pretty much everyone who's older and who engages in "risky sex" -- that is, anal -- has been infected.

So the highest incidence of HIV infection is occurring among young gay men.

As they age, prevalence will skyrocket.

For example, "At an average 4 percent annual rate of increase in new infections, three-quarters of black gay men who are now 23-29 will be HIV-positive by the time they are 50."

Those are amazing figures.

As discussed in the previous message thread, this is what happens when political correctness trumps epidemiology.

AIDS activists, unwilling to "stigmatize" anal, will not focus on the actual risk behavior which spreads HIV -- anal penetration.

Instead, they talk about EBA -- everything but anal.

That will never work.

The only way to prevent an epidemic is to address the actual risk behavior which spreads the disease.

What AIDS Inc is doing now is the equivalent of trying to stop lung cancer without mentioning smoking.

No way.

But in the present highly polarized cultural and political climate, it's difficult to imagine AIDS Inc behaving any differently; while the religious right will push abstinence and abstinence only.

Which means that each and every day, more and more young gay men -- will be infected.

© All material Copyright 2006 by Bill Weintraub. All rights reserved.

PS For those of you still doing anal or who are promiscuous, there's this piece of good news:

The herpes-HIV connection

August 19, 2006

Mac prof leads AIDS conference panel exploring risk factors

Sharon Boase

North Americans infected with the herpes Type 2 virus face a three-fold risk of contracting HIV, delegates to the International AIDS conference in Toronto heard this week.

But people in Africa infected with herpes Type 2 are at 10 times the risk of contracting HIV. As many as 70 per cent of people in parts of Africa are infected with the herpes virus.

A gathering of scientists led by a McMaster University researcher heard that a herpes infection increases the number of HIV-susceptible target cells in the genital tract.


So: if you're an American and you have herpes, your chance of contracting HIV is tripled.

And herpes, unlike HIV, is highly infectious.

There's also, it would appear, a link between HPV and HIV.

Since 95% of poz guys have anal HPV -- the virus which causes anal cancer.

HPV also is easily transmitted.

The more promiscuous you are, the greater the likelihood that you'll acquire both HPV and herpes.

At which point, your body is primed for HIV infection.

Bill Weintraub

© All material Copyright 2006 by Bill Weintraub. All rights reserved.

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