Friday, March 26, 2004

Five CJD deaths in north N.J. in 15 months

From the UPI:
    This would be an unusually high number for a uncommon disorder that is thought to occur at the rate of only one case per 1 million population per year.

    The combined population of the two counties is approximately 789,000, so they would expect to see no more than one case of sporadic CJD in that time frame. According to DHSS figures, which go back to 1979, the two counties have never experienced two CJD cases in the same year -- let alone five.
If we close our eyes really tight, we could pretend this isn't happening.
    Asked about the seemingly high rate, DHSS spokeswoman Jennifer Sciortino said, "New Jersey's incident rate (for the entire state) is approximately 8 per year and thus there is no indication that we are exceeding the average case count per year." Sciortino added, "In fact, over the last 25 years there have been instances where the total number of cases topped out at around 14 per year."