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  1. 1

    Valiadation of a new clinical case definition for paediatric HIV infection, Bloemfontein, South Africa [letter]

    Joubert G; Shoeman CJ; Bester CJ

    Journal of Tropical Pediatrics. 2005 Dec; 51(6):387.

    In 2003 a study was published, evaluating the WHO clinical case definition for paediatric HIV infection in Bloemfontein, South Africa. It was found that the WHO case definition could only detect 14.5 per cent of children who were in fact symptomatic and HIV positive on age-appropriate serology testing. Following logistic regression analysis, a new case definition was proposed, namely that HIV is suspected in a child who has at least two of the following four signs: marasmus, hepatosplenomegaly, oropharyngeal candidiasis, and generalized lymphadenopathy. This new case definition had a sensitivity of 63.2 per cent and a specificity of 96.0 per cent. (excerpt)
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  2. 2

    The global eradication of smallpox. Final report of the Global Commission for the Certification of Smallpox Eradication, Geneva, December 1979.

    World Health Organization [WHO]. Global Commission for the Certification of Smallpox Eradication

    Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 1980. 122 p. (History of International Public Health No. 4)

    The Global Commission for the Certification of Smallpox Eradication met in December 1978 to review the program in detail and to advise on subsequent activities and met again in December 1979 to assess progress and to make the final recommendations that are presented in this report. Additionally, the report contains a summary account of the history of smallpox, the clinical, epidemiological, and virological features of the disease, the efforts to control and eradicate smallpox prior to 1966, and an account of the intensified program during the 1967-79 period. The report describes the procedures used for the certification of eradication along with the findings of 21 different international commissions that visited and reviewed programs in 61 countries. These findings provide the basis for the Commission's conclusion that the global eradication of smallpox has been achieved. The Commission also concluded that there is no evidence that smallpox will return as an endemic disease. The overall development and coordination of the intensified program were carried out by a smallpox unit established at the World Health Organization (WHO) headquarters in Geneva, which worked closely with WHO staff at regional offices and, through them, with national staff and WHO advisers at the country level. Earlier programs had been based on a mass vaccination strategy. The intensified campaign called for programs designed to vaccinate at least 80% of the population within a 2-3 year period. During this time, reporting systems and surveillance activities were to be developed that would permit detection and elimination of the remaining foci of the disease. Support was sought and obtained from many different governments and agencies. The progression of the eradication program can be divided into 3 phases: the period between 1967-72 when eradication was achieved in most African countries, Indonesia, and South America; the 1973-75 period when major efforts focused on the countries of the Indian subcontinent; and the 1975-77 period when the goal of eradication was realized in the Horn of Africa. Global Commission recommendations for WHO policy in the post-eradication era include: the discontinuation of smallpox vaccination; continuing surveillance of monkey pox in West and Central Africa; supervision of the stocks and use of variola virus in laboratories; a policy of insurance against the return of the disease that includes thorough investigation of reports of suspected smallpox; the maintenance of an international reserve of freeze-dried vaccine under WHO control; and measures designed to ensure that laboratory and epidemiological expertise in human poxvirus infections should not be dissipated.
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  3. 3

    Design and conduct of clinical trials of contraceptive methods [letter]

    Farley TM


    Comments on the topic of selection of subjects for clinical trials of contraceptives, in response to a review on design of clinical trials, point out the inadvisability of restricting the study population to women of known high fertility. First, limiting the study group may make recruitment difficult. More important, however, most contraceptive trials look at other end point besides pregnancy: data are collected on use effectiveness, patient satisfaction and continuation rates. This information is best obtained from women representative of the whole community, such as those close to 45 years old. If a study group representative of the total population is used, results can be applied to field conditions with confidence.
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  4. 4

    New WHO data on a progestin-releasing vaginal ring.

    OUTLOOK. 1990 Jun; 8(2):7-9.

    This article summarizes the most recent data on WHO's multicenter clinical trial test of the low dose progestin-releasing vaginal ring as an effective contraceptive for women. The study involved 1005 women aged 19-34 and was carried out from 1980-86 at 19 centers in 13 countries, including 9 developing countries. The overall findings on vaginal ring use included: the ring's effectiveness was comparable to oral contraceptive (OC) effectiveness, pregnancy rates increased with increasing body weight, about 1/2 of the users had discontinued the ring by 1 year, the ring disrupted menstrual bleeding patterns in about 1/2 of all users, and about 1/4 of all users expelled the ring at least once but most continued to use it. The irregular bleeding pattern was the main reason for discontinuation. Part of the reason for having different ring contraceptive effectiveness in different countries could be due to differing average weights of the women. Increasing risk of expulsion was directly related to increasing age by approximately 3% with each year of age. For effective use of 90-day low-dose levonorgestrel-releasing vaginal ring, appropriate clients should have the following: a dislike for inserting and removing vaginal devices, low weight, counselling on potentially irregular bleeding, and counseling on how to deal with an expulsion. (author's modified)
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  5. 5
    Peer Reviewed

    A randomized, double-blind study of six combined oral contraceptives.

    World Health Organization [WHO]. Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction. Task Force on Oral Contraceptives

    Contraception. 1982 Mar; 25(3):231-41.

    A randomized, controlled, clinical trial comparing 6 combined oral contraceptives (OCs) with 50 mcg or less of ethinyl estradiol was undertaken in 10 WHO Collaborating Centers for Clinical Research in Human Reproduction. A total of 2430 women entered the trial and were observed for 28,077 woman-cycles. All low-dose combined OCs demonstrated equivalent efficacy with 1-year pregnancy rates of 1-6%. However, discontinuation rates for medical reasons differed significantly between the treatment groups with the preparation containing 20 mcg ethinyl estradiol and that containing 400 mcg norethisterone acetate being associated with higher discontinuation rates due to bleeding disturbances. Even among the preparations which did not differ in discontinuation rates, the reasons for discontinuation did differ. Women receiving norethisterone preparations tended to discontinue because of bleeding disturbances while those receiving the levonorgestrel-containing preparations tended to discontinue because of complaints of nausea and vomiting. (author's)
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