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Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report

1. (Box) World AIDS Day – December 1, 2009

Press Contact: CDC
Division of Media Relations 
(404) 636-3286

No summary available.

2. HIV Infection Among Injection-Drug Users – 34 States, 2004-2007

Press Contact: CDC
National Center for HIV/AIDS,
Viral Hepatitis, STD
and TB Prevention Media Line  
(404) 639-8895

Despite overall declines in new HIV infections among injection drug users (IDUs), data indicate that IDUs continue to account for a substantial proportion of new HIV diagnoses in the United States. CDC researchers analyzed data on new HIV diagnoses from 2004 to 2007 in 34 states with longstanding, name-based HIV reporting. Overall, IDUs accounted for 13 percent of all new HIV diagnoses. Among IDUs diagnosed with HIV, the majority were male (62 percent), black (58 percent), and lived in an urban area at the time of diagnosis (75 percent). By age, the highest percentage of HIV diagnoses among IDUs occurred among persons aged 35-44 years (33 percent). The HIV diagnosis rate for black IDUs (11.0 per every 100,000 population) was 12 times the rate for whites (0.9/100,000), and the rate for Hispanic IDUs (4.9/100,000) was five times the rate for whites. More IDUs were diagnosed late in the course of infection than any other risk group; 41 percent received an AIDS diagnosis within one year of their initial HIV diagnosis. Late diagnoses were particularly high among young Hispanic and black IDUs when compared to their white counterparts. Comprehensive HIV prevention efforts for IDUs, including HIV testing, substance abuse treatment, and access to sterile syringes, condoms, and other health services are critical to fight HIV among this population.

3. Acute HIV Infection – New York City, 2008

Press Contact: CDC
New York City Department of Health
and Mental Hygiene Press Office  
(212) 788-5290

Enhanced citywide efforts to detect acute HIV infection (AHI), the earliest and most infectious stage of infection, led to an increased number of AHI cases identified in New York City. Finding HIV infections early is critical in order to limit transmission to others; however, this can be challenging because AHI cannot be detected with usual HIV antibody tests. In 2008, New York City initiated routine RNA screening for AHI among patients with negative rapid HIV test results at four sexually transmitted disease clinics to increase detection of AHI, and also modified citywide surveillance efforts to identify AHI among patients diagnosed in clinical settings. In total, 70 cases of AHI were identified, representing two percent of all HIV diagnoses reported in New York City during the time of the project, and nine percent of all HIV diagnoses at the STD clinics. The majority (81 percent) of those with AHI were men who have sex with men (MSM). This report indicates that RNA screening of STD clinic patients, especially MSM, can be useful in identifying cases of AHI that would have otherwise gone undiagnosed, and that enhanced surveillance efforts can increase the overall number of cases of AHI identified in clinical settings. Such efforts may ultimately allow public health efforts to focus prevention and partner notification on individuals in the earliest stages of infection.

4. Pseudo-Outbreak of Antimony Toxicity in Firefighters – Florida, 2009

Press Contact: Fred Blosser
CDC/NIOSH Public Affairs
(202) 245-0645

Antimony Oxides in combination with Halogens have been used as flame retardants in textiles since the 1960s. Uniforms made from fabrics containing antimony are common among the estimated 1.1 million firefighters in the United States. In October of 2008, CDC received a report from the fire chief of a Florida fire department (fire dept. A) regarding an outbreak of antimony toxicity in among 30 firefighters who had elevated antimony levels detected in hair samples. This report summarizes the ensuing health hazard evaluation conducted by CDC to determine the source of antimony exposure. The CDC concluded that wearing flame-retardant pants made from antimony-containing fabric was not associated with elevated levels of urine antimony among 62 firefighters. Clinicians should use only a validated method such as urine testing to determine antimony toxicity in suspected cases, and officials responding to suspected workplace exposures should use accurate and timely risk communication techniques to allay unsubstantiated concerns.

 

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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

  • Historical Document: November 25, 2009
  • Content source: Office of Enterprise Communication
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