Forced marriage: the health consequences

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According to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), more than 140 million girls will be married between 2011 and 2020.

Forced marriage is when a person marries against their will. It is organized by families who do not respect or even care about their child’s denial of consent. Young girls who try to escape it are very often confronted with a family breakdown, with physical and psychological risks, and the traumas generated by early and unwanted sexual activity, early pregnancy, infections of the genital system. (AGI) and HIV.

What are the consequences of these forced marriages on the health of young girls?

Find the full program by clicking here.

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The health consequences of forced marriage

Published on :

According to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), more than 140 million girls will be married between 2011 and 2020.

Forced marriage involves marrying a person against their will. It is organized by families who do not respect or even care about their child’s denial of consent. Young girls who try to escape it are very often confronted with family breakdown, physical and psychological risks, and the traumas caused by early and unwanted sexual activity, early pregnancy, infections of the genital tract. (AGI) and HIV.

How can we help these women and girls, some of whom live in Europe and are forced into marriage abroad? What physical and psychological pathologies or disorders are diagnosed in the wake of these practices? Who to consult?

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How to avoid a resurgence of malaria in sub-Saharan Africa?

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Transmitted to humans by mosquito bites, malaria is a potentially fatal disease, which caused 405,000 deaths in 2018, 94% of which were in Africa. As the continent also faces the Covid-19 pandemic, which is straining already fragile health systems, the WHO is concerned about an upsurge in malaria cases. The number of deaths could even double in 2020, which would represent a return to the mortality rates observed 20 years ago

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Malaria – Health priority

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Transmitted to humans by mosquito bites, malaria is a potentially fatal disease, which caused 405,000 deaths in 2018, 94% of which were in Africa. As the continent also faces the Covid-19 pandemic, which is straining already fragile health systems, the WHO is concerned about an upsurge in malaria cases. The number of deaths could even double in 2020, which would represent a return to the mortality rates observed 20 years ago

How to continue prevention? What are the effective treatments? What are the advances in research?

At the end of the program, we come back to a study concerning the yellow fever vaccine, and show that a divided dose protects against the disease, while the question of the shortage of this vaccine regularly arises. We talk about it with Rebecca Grais, research director at Epicenter for MSF.

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Take care of your heart

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Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the world. Populations in low- and middle-income countries are the hardest hit by these pathologies.

While 80% of premature strokes and heart attacks are preventable, how can we improve prevention and management? How to take care of your heart?

At the end of the program, we find the nutrition chronicle of Stephane Besancon, nutritionist and director ofNGO Health Diabetes in Bamako in Mali.

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When does the baby sleep through the night?

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Baby’s sleep is essential for its development and very quickly becomes a major concern for parents.

What role does sleep play in a child’s development? When does the baby sleep at night? When does the child stop napping?

  • Prof. Abdoul-Aziz Diakité, Head of General Pediatrician at Gabriel Touré Hospital in Bamako, Mali, takes care of children with sickle cell disease.

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Women’s Questions: Baby Sleep

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Every Friday, Priorité Santé deals with a topic of women’s health, in a practical way. This week we are talking about the sleep of babies.

Baby’s sleep is essential for its development and very quickly becomes a major concern for parents. What to do when baby doesn’t sleep through the night? Should you put your child to bed at fixed times? How do you know if he’s tired? How long is the nap necessary?

  • Prof. Abdoul-Aziz Diakité, Head of the General Pediatrician at the Gabriel Touré Hospital in Bamako, Mali, takes care of children with sickle cell disease.

Africa Challenge App 2020: the 10 finalists selected

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What do we know about the different variants of Covid-19?

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British, South African, Brazilian or Japanese… The different variants of Sars-CoV-2 are worrying. Responsible for an increase in contagiousness, they could also have an impact on vaccine effectiveness, even if this remains to be demonstrated.

Sars-CoV-2, responsible for Covid-19, has several thousand variants. It is a frequent and natural phenomenon. Indeed, when the coronavirus uses our infected cells to multiply, it sometimes happens that there are copying errors: mutations. In the vast majority of cases, they are harmless and can sometimes even be deleterious for the virus. Unfortunately, other times these mutations can give him an advantage. This is the case for the British, South African or Brazilian variants: copying errors allowed them to be more contagious.

The mutations have, in fact, taken place on the key that the virus uses to enter our cells: the S protein, or spicule. This key is more efficient on these variants. These mutations are closely watched, because beyond their impact on the progression of the epidemic, the S protein is also the target of our immune system.

► Also to listen: Variants of Covid-19 in France: “People who are carriers of the mutated virus are more likely to communicate it”

N501Y and E484K

Two mutations in particular are currently being monitored. The first is what scientists call N501Y. It is indeed suspected of making the coronavirus more contagious. This mutation is present on the three variants which make the news: British, South African and Brazilian (and not Japanese, because if it does indeed talk about him in Japan, it was imported there by travelers from Brazil).

Although the increase in contagiousness is proven, these variants have not, however, become resistant to vaccines. In any case, it is not resistant to that developed by Pfizer-BioNtech, for which des tests in vitro made it possible to ascertain this.

The second mutation, however, offers potential resistance to the variants that carry it. Named E484K, it is present on the South African and Brazilian variants, but absent from the British. Because of it, they are suspected to be less sensitive to the immune response of our body. There are two main elements that support this hypothesis and they have both been the subject of scientific publications which are reacting, even if they are only at the pre-publication stage.

The first describes a case of reinfection in Brazil. This is a 37-year-old woman, infected for the first time in June, then a second time in October, by the variant carrying the E484K mutation. This second contamination caused a more serious form of Covid-19. This could be a sign that this variant was less sensitive to this woman’s immune response.

The second article relates a laboratory experiment: the coronavirus was placed in the presence of plasma from a cured patient, and therefore of his antibodies. The goal was then to observe if, according to the natural mutations of the virus, it could become resistant to these antibodies. The answer is yes: a variant appeared after three months. He carried this same E484K mutation.

Resistance yet to be proven

Taken together, these elements therefore worry the community. But for now, these are still only clues, and we do not yet have enough knowledge to say that the variants carrying this E484K mutation would indeed be more resistant. Even if this would be the case, it remains very likely that the vaccines developed will retain some efficacy. Several parts of the spicule are in fact targeted: if some are modified by a mutation, there will always remain others leading to an effective immune response.

Of course, the risk of the appearance of a resistant variant worries. However, this remains to be confirmed for the moment, and there is already something to do with gray hair with the increase in contagiousness observed on these three variants.

With the “classic” coronavirus, it is estimated that around 70% of the population is immune to stop the epidemic, whether this immunity is acquired after contracting the disease or after vaccination. With a more contagious variant, this proportion rises to 80%, or even more. Finally, a virus that circulates more is also a virus that is more likely to see variants appear, some of which could be even more annoying.

Our selection on the coronavirus

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Africa / France hospital partnerships – Priority health

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The AP-HP has an International Relations department which develops cooperation projects, in particular with French-speaking establishments.

These partnerships bring together hospitals in the Paris region with hospital services from establishments that will be able to benefit from support in terms of expertise, training, resources or materials … During this program, we will present three of these projects in French-speaking Africa, by giving a voice to the doctors who, in Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal, carry out and lead these projects which make it possible to increase the supply of care.

  • Pr Gilles Brucker, doctor and professor of public health at the University of Paris Sud, specialist in epidemiology of communicable diseases. Head of hospital cooperation at the AP-HP International Relations Department. General Secretary of AFRAVIH, the Francophone Alliance of Health Actors Against HIV
  • Dr Serge Ngouatna, an anesthesiologist at the Yaoundé Emergency Center in Cameroon
  • Pr Madeleine Amorissani Folquet, President of UNAPSA (Union of African National Pediatric Societies and Associations). Head of the Pediatrics Department at Cocody University Hospital in Abidjan and Vice-President of the Ivorian Pediatric Society
  • Professor Silly Touré, Head of the Department of Stomatology and Maxillofacial Surgery at the Aristide Le Dantec University Hospital in Dakar, Senegal. First Senegalese stomatologist.

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