LDN and AIDS
Mar. 8, 2007
PREVENTING AIDS WITH LDN IN MALI, AFRICA
Exploring Low Dose Naltrexone and Gender Education in the Treatment of HIV in Mali, Africa
The AIDS situation in Africa has reached a pandemic level. More than 26 million people are HIV-positive, over 6 million have active AIDS and 11 million have already died as a result of the devastating illness. Of those newly infected, over 60% are women, many with children also infected. In sub-Saharan Africa one-half of the 14 million orphans are estimated to be HIV+ and 50% of untreated newborn HIV+ babies will die before the age of two. HAART drugs are available to less than 25% of those who need them (only 6% of children) due to cost and lack of medical personnel. Not only are these drugs costly and complex to administer, they are often too toxic for children who are even more difficult to manage medically. Our recent discovery of the effectiveness of NALTREXONE in ultra low doses (LDN) to strengthen the immunity of autistic children started us on this pathway of wanting to help with HIV/AIDS in Africa. If proven effective in our controlled, clinical study in Mali, this easily managed, inexpensive non-toxic drug can keep HIV-positive persons from progressing to AIDS. The implications are enormous.
Of equal urgency is the need to decrease the incidence of initial HIV infections. It is widely accepted now by international health experts and local authorities alike that gender inequality and men�s traditional cultural entitlement including violence to women are important factors in creating and maintaining the AIDS catastrophe in many developing countries. In Africa the majority of women who are HIV positive have been infected by their husbands. Traditional gender mores dictate that women cannot refuse sex and cannot insist on condoms. U.N. officials, the Mali Government and many others have stated that this epidemic will not abate until women become empowered to protect their own health and the health of their children. Our Mali program deals directly with this challenge by bringing the men and women in our clinical study together in council-groups to explore issues of health, intimacy and empowerment.
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