In 1986 the World Health
Organization and others formerly decided that for surveillance and
record keeping purposes it was sufficient to diagnose AIDS
symptomatically. So to be classified as having AIDS, patients
should show two of the so-called major symptoms.
The symptoms and
- Chronic Diarrhea for
more than a month.
- Weight loss of 10% of
- Intermittent or
constant fever for more than a month.
with the above they should also show one or more of the following minor
- History of herpes
Persistent cough for more than a month.
Generalized itchy skin rashes.
Chronic progressive or disseminated herpes virus infection.
Swollen lymph glands.
The above became known as
the Bangui definition and was accepted as sufficient despite the fact
that numerous other conditions can fit this profile. Laboratory
facilities remain scarce in rural areas in Africa and AIDS is diagnosed
on this basis in many rural areas.
Taking the statistics into account it is
a known fact, that collecting precise medical data in sub-Saharan
Africa, with it's abject poverty is almost impossible. The UNAIDS and
other organizations compute the number of HIV cases from counting HIV
positive pregnant women who visit health clinics. The number is
extrapolated in complex mathematical models to estimate the death toll.