WE’RE CONCERNED ABOUT: Chagas Disease

populations_chagas

As if our friends down in Mexico did not have enough to worry about, the new edition of The Economist reports a startling rise in the number of cases of deadly Chagas Disease in our neighbor to the south.

Ugh!

The disease — which even a medical nerd like Transracial had never even heard of — is a killer! Indeed, some 18 million folks in Latin America suffer from the ailment, which — like HIV — can take years to manifest into severe, fatal heart and bowel problems.

Although mostly prevalent in Brazil, Argentina and Bolivia, Chagas — which is spread by a nasty bug which bites folks on the face as they sleep — is rearing its deadly head in southern Mexico and throughout Central America.

Medical cures are available, but only if treated fairly quickly after exposure — a problem as symptoms take years to turn up.

But as knowledge is always power, good news is on the horizon. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the discovery of Chagas by Carlos Chagas — a young Brazilian doctor — and a major conference is planned soon in Belem, Brazil as well as…get this…a Chagas-themed opera.

Bravo!

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