AIDS = #1!

Move over depression! Step aside heart attacks! There’s soon to be a new top killer up in here: the only, the odious, the most horrific virus in human history: AIDS! Please, hold your applause because, really, that’s some scary shit.

The World Health Organization prediction claims the HIV-born bug will take the top-slot by the year 2030.

If it was not for HIV, the proportion of the world’s deaths caused by infectious diseases would almost halve from over 15 million deaths a year in 2002 to eight million by 2030. But add on AIDS, and you get only a modest decline from 18 million today to 15 million in 2030. AIDS, by then, will cause 42% of all deaths due to infectious disease, compared with 15% today.

It’s worth noting, however, that AIDS earns that disgraceful honor by default. UK Gay News reports:

There will however, be one worse killer than AIDS, WHO warned: tobacco. Because it’s a cause of disease rather than a disease itself, cigarettes are not on the list, but they will cause eight million deaths a year by 2030, while AIDS will kill 6.3 million.

Yowzers. Those are some pretty frightening numbers. Don’t fret, however, because the report isn’t all doom and gloom. Western (healthy) women can add a few years to their life-expectancy, which has just been boosted to 85, while their male peers can expect to leave an average of 80 years. Meanwhile, in the rest of the world, men and women both are expected to clock in 65 earthly years. Expect, of course, in Africa – men and women get the shaft, with a predicted life span of 55. Sorry, kids.

While some diseases can be managed by drugs – like strokes and heart attacks – experts warn of a dark horse on the horizon: diabetes, an unfortunate side effect to humanity’s expanding waist lines.