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Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are

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Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 03 May 2013, 01:43
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Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are the two most common infectious diseases. Over the past five years, schistosomiasis has been primarily responsible for the overall increase in infectious disease cases. Therefore it is likely that there were more cases of schistosomiasis than malaria five years ago.

Which of the following most strengthens the argument above?

A. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by schistosomiasis has remained unchanged, but the percentage of cases caused by malaria has increased substantially.

B. Trends in infectious disease data tend to persist for decades, unless there is a major breakthrough in treatment regimens.

C. Five years ago, many more people died from schistosomiasis than died from malaria.

D. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by malaria was not significantly greater than the percentage of cases caused by schistosomiasis.

E. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by diseases other than malaria and schistosomiasis did not increase substantially.
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 04 May 2013, 21:17
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Hi,

Please look at my comments inline:

Question analysis:

schistosomiasis ->major cause in overall increase in infectious disease cases :You are correct here

conclusion: there were more cases of schistosomiasis thanb of malaria five years ago.

So we know that the percentage growth of schistosomiasis is greater to the percentage increase of malaria over the five years :Wrong we cant assume this.
May be the base of malaria was so small that a greater percentage will not mean more cases.Ex lets assume 10 cases of malaria and 90 of schistosomiasis means even if malaria grows my 100% to 20 and schistosomiasis doesnt grow,still schistosomiasis will contribute more cases.


If only we can prove malaria and schistosomiasis were of same levels before five years or schistosomiasis was of much higher level than the cases of malaria we wold have achieved our goal.
You are right here and this is proved by option A..
The reasoning is that as per option A ,the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by schistosomiasis has remained unchanged, but the percentage of cases caused by malaria has increased substantially and yet schistosomiasis has been primarily responsible for the overall increase in infectious disease cases..This means that schistosomiasis was of much higher level than the cases of malaria9as you have said above).


Only option C satisfies this. Wrong as option C talks only about death and not about number of cases so easy to eliminiate this option.

In these kind of question try to eliminate as many option as poosible so that your foucus is on understanding the implication of the options remaining.
Hope this helps.
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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 03 May 2013, 03:17
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Fact1: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are the two most common infectious diseases.

Fact2: Over the past five years, schistosomiasis has been primarily responsible for the overall increase in infectious disease cases.

Conclusion: it is likely that there were more cases of schistosomiasis than malaria five years ago.

choice A is the correct answer because:

fact2 says that schistosomiasis has been primarily responsible for the overall increase in infectious disease cases over past 5 years.

Now if its percentage has remained unchanged as said in choice A then that means that it was already having more cases as even with same percentage it is still primarily responsible for the overall increase in infectious disease cases as compared to malaria whose percentage has increased.
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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 04 Mar 2014, 23:44
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thelosthippie wrote:
Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are the two most common infectious diseases. Over the past five years, schistosomiasis has been primarily responsible for the overall increase in infectious disease cases. Therefore it is likely that there were more cases of schistosomiasis than malaria five years ago.

Which of the following most strengthens the argument above?

A. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by schistosomiasis has remained unchanged, but the percentage of cases caused by malaria has increased substantially.

B. Trends in infectious disease data tend to persist for decades, unless there is a major breakthrough in treatment regimens.

C. Five years ago, many more people died from schistosomiasis than died from malaria.

D. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by malaria was not significantly greater than the percentage of cases caused by schistosomiasis.

E. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by diseases other than malaria and schistosomiasis did not increase substantially.


Yes, the argument is analytical. Let's understand it first.

Two most common infectious diseases: schistosomiasis and malaria
Infectious disease cases have increased in the past 5 yrs (say from a total of 100 five yrs ago to 150 now). Schistosomiasis led to this increase so probably many of the extra 50 cases are those of Schistosomiasis.
Conclusion: It is likely that there were more cases of schistosomiasis than malaria five years ago i.e. say 5 yrs ago, there were 70 schistosomiasis cases while there were 20 malaria cases (and 10 other disease cases)

We need to strengthen the conclusion.

A. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by schistosomiasis has remained unchanged, but the percentage of cases caused by malaria has increased substantially.
If most of the increase in cases is due to schistosomiasis but the % of schistosomiasis in the total cases is the same, it means, most of the cases comprised of schistosomiasis earlier too. So this strengthens our conclusion. Let's take a look using numbers too.

Today if still 70% infectious disease cases are those of schistosomiasis, it means there are 105 schistosomiasis cases today (an increase of 35 out of the extra 50).
If malaria cases have increased to 30%, number of malaria cases would be 45 i.e. an increase of 15 out of the extra 50.
We see that schistosomiasis cases account for most of the extra 50 cases i.e. they account for 35 cases. So this strengthens our conclusion.

B. Trends in infectious disease data tend to persist for decades, unless there is a major breakthrough in treatment regimens.
We don't know if there has been a major breakthrough in treatment regimens on any disease in the past 5 yrs. It is possible that 5 yrs ago there were more cases of malaria than schistosomiasis but breakthrough in treatment regimen of malaria led to a decline in its cases.

C. Five years ago, many more people died from schistosomiasis than died from malaria.
Number of deaths is irrelevant to the number of cases since the argument doesn't say which disease is more serious, has better medicines etc. It is possible that schistosomiasis had fewer cases 5 yrs ago but is much more serious and led to death more often.

D. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by malaria was not significantly greater than the percentage of cases caused by schistosomiasis.
This says that % of malaria cases was not much greater (though perhaps a little greater) than % of schistosomiasis cases over the past 5 years. If anything, this weakens our conclusion. It indirectly implies that out of 100 cases 5 yrs ago, malaria cases were slightly more than schistosomiasis cases.

E. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by diseases other than malaria and schistosomiasis did not increase substantially.
This says that % of other diseases has held steady. So if earlier, 10% of cases (10 cases) were other diseases, still 10% of cases (i.e. 15 cases) are other diseases. This doesn't say whether 5 yrs ago there were more cases of schistosomiasis or malaria.

Answer (A)
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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 04 May 2013, 03:29
thelosthippie wrote:
Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are the two most common infectious diseases. Over the past five years, schistosomiasis has been primarily responsible for the overall increase in infectious disease cases. Therefore it is likely that there were more cases of schistosomiasis than malaria five years ago.

Which of the following most strengthens the argument above?

A. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by schistosomiasis has remained unchanged, but the percentage of cases caused by malaria has increased substantially.

B. Trends in infectious disease data tend to persist for decades, unless there is a major breakthrough in treatment regimens.

C. Five years ago, many more people died from schistosomiasis than died from malaria.

D. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by malaria was not significantly greater than the percentage of cases caused by schistosomiasis.

E. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by diseases other than malaria and schistosomiasis did not increase substantially.



Can someone quite eloborate on answer choices , i'm not quite getting this. please. :)

I feel C is the correct answer .

Question analysis:

schistosomiasis ->major cause in overall increase in infectious disease cases

conclusion: there were more cases of schistosomiasis thanb of malaria five years ago.

So we know that the percentage growth of schistosomiasis is greater to the percentage increase of malaria over the five years .

If only we can prove malaria and schistosomiasis were of same levels before five years or schistosomiasis was of much higher level than the cases of malaria we wold have achieved our goal.

Only option C satisfies this.
Please confirm the answer choice someone. Very good question. :)
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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 04 May 2013, 21:37
ssbisht wrote:
Hi,

Please look at my comments inline:

Question analysis:

schistosomiasis ->major cause in overall increase in infectious disease cases :You are correct here

conclusion: there were more cases of schistosomiasis thanb of malaria five years ago.

So we know that the percentage growth of schistosomiasis is greater to the percentage increase of malaria over the five years :Wrong we cant assume this.
May be the base of malaria was so small that a greater percentage will not mean more cases.Ex lets assume 10 cases of malaria and 90 of schistosomiasis means even if malaria grows my 100% to 20 and schistosomiasis doesnt grow,still schistosomiasis will contribute more cases.


If only we can prove malaria and schistosomiasis were of same levels before five years or schistosomiasis was of much higher level than the cases of malaria we wold have achieved our goal.
You are right here and this is proved by option A..
The reasoning is that as per option A ,the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by schistosomiasis has remained unchanged, but the percentage of cases caused by malaria has increased substantially and yet schistosomiasis has been primarily responsible for the overall increase in infectious disease cases..This means that schistosomiasis was of much higher level than the cases of malaria9as you have said above).


Only option C satisfies this. Wrong as option C talks only about death and not about number of cases so easy to eliminiate this option.

In these kind of question try to eliminate as many option as poosible so that your foucus is on understanding the implication of the options remaining.
Hope this helps.


Fully satisfied with your answer!!
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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 10 May 2013, 03:58
(P)->Schi caused overall inc in no. of cases in infection disease in last five years
(P)->Schi and malaria 2 most common diseases
(C)-> Higher no. of schi cases than malaria cases

Now to the answer choices
(E)->out of scope
(D)->restates the conclusion
(C)-> out of scope, talks abt data 5 years ago
(B)-> No breakthru in treatment coudn't explain increase in schi cases than malaria
(A)-> Bingo. Take the no. of schi cases as 100 and malaria as 30 5yrs ago. Now as per ans choice %age of schi cases has remained unchanged which means schi cases 100 and malaria cases has 50% increment, which come to 60. Proves that there are more no. of schi cases than malaria cases after 5 years

However, I was thinking if the reason for answering is correct or not. Also, what cud have been the assumption in this case?
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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 10 May 2013, 04:23
kawan84 wrote:
(P)->Schi caused overall inc in no. of cases in infection disease in last five years
(P)->Schi and malaria 2 most common diseases
(C)-> Higher no. of schi cases than malaria cases

Now to the answer choices
(E)->out of scope
(D)->restates the conclusion
(C)-> out of scope, talks abt data 5 years ago
(B)-> No breakthru in treatment coudn't explain increase in schi cases than malaria
(A)-> Bingo. Take the no. of schi cases as 100 and malaria as 30 5yrs ago. Now as per ans choice %age of schi cases has remained unchanged which means schi cases 100 and malaria cases has 50% increment, which come to 60. Proves that there are more no. of schi cases than malaria cases after 5 years

However, I was thinking if the reason for answering is correct or not. Also, what cud have been the assumption in this case?


You are going in right direction but getting confused with numbers.No offense but had it been a quant question you could have got it wrong.
Example a 50% increase in malaria in your case will take the count to 45 from 30 as 50% of 30 is 15.
Similarly the count of schi cases will go up in the same proportion to keep it %tage constant,which is around 77% ( 100/100+30)

You can look at my posts above to get an understanding of how to approach such question without getting into numbers.
Hope it helps.

thanks :)
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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 10 May 2013, 09:33
Thanks for correction ssbisht. Small mistakes, big fine.. completely agree with your thoughts. I've been thru ur posts, however, my question still remains regarding the calc of schi cases when the % was unchanged
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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 18 Feb 2014, 21:52
this one is totally about math... higher growth ,but the number after 5 yrs is still smaller ,so the original number must be smaller also
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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are [#permalink] New post 03 Mar 2014, 08:14
A seems the best for the following reasoning, though I went with A, D seems very close, any alternate explanation why D can be eliminated?

A. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by schistosomiasis has remained unchanged, but the percentage of cases caused by malaria has increased substantially.
From the argument, we gather that Schist has been primarily responsible for overall iincrease in ifectious diseases. Now lets come to this answer. Schist percentage remains same. With this infor schist is still major contributor, so let us safely assume that schist makes up 60% of infectious diseases. If malaria made significant increases, then malaria may have gone from 15% five years ago to 40% now, still a substantial increase. Therefore this answer gives us good reason to believe schist had more cases than malaria five years ago Correct answer.
B. Trends in infectious disease data tend to persist for decades, unless there is a major breakthrough in treatment regimens.
The words like tend to imply a good possibility, but this in itself is not sufficient to best support above argument.
C. Five years ago, many more people died from schistosomiasis than died from malaria.
This choice is misleading, more deaths does not mean more cases of infection.
D. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by malaria was not significantly greater than the percentage of cases caused by schistosomiasis.
This only talks about past 5 years, this choice does not rule out possibility of more cases of malaria 5 years ago
E. Over the past five years, the percentage of infectious disease cases caused by diseases other than malaria and schistosomiasis did not increase substantially.
Other diseases not increasing does not give us enough information to make a comparison between Malaria and schist.
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Re: Epidemiologist: In Brazil, schistosomiasis and malaria are   [#permalink] 03 Mar 2014, 08:14
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