Intended for healthcare professionals



BMJ 2005; 331 doi: (Published 10 November 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;331:1152

Under-reporting of sexual abuse, alongside a failure to adhere to post-exposure prophylaxis against HIV infection, is undermining the implementation of the antiretroviral roll-out programme in South Africa. The first case of seroconversion after abuse, in a 13 year old girl who was sexually abused by two men, is described in the Journal of Clinical Forensic Medicine (2005;12: 268-70). In one government hospital in 2003, 598 victims of rape were offered prophylaxis, but a staggering 85% failed to take the full course. This patient was one of them.

Molecular mimicry may link the development of Crohn's disease with certain foods. Crohn's has a histological similarity with intestinal tuberculosis, leading to the assumption that mycobacterial antigens could have a role in its aetiology. Several food additives (emulsifiers, thickeners, surface finishing agents, and plasticisers) share structural characteristics with mycobacterial lipids, so these compounds may stimulate the same pro-inflammatory cytokine cascade triggered in the gut by mycobacteria. Confirmation of this mechanism could lead to a strong emphasis on dietary treatment (Medical Hypotheses 2005;65: 859-64).

Maternal fatigue by day 14 after the birth of a baby is apparently the most predictive variable for symptoms of postpartum depression (Journal of Obstetric Gynecologic and Neonatal Nursing 2005;34: 577-86). Minerva has yet to meet a new mum …

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