Big, brawny ruffians and oversized guards with nightsticks are legitimate causes for worry in the slammer, but they're no match for the most vicious perpetrators, which are smaller than the eye can see.
  • Prisons are overcrowded, poorly-ventilated places. It comes as no surprise, then that the odds of contracting tuberculosis increase exponentially with sentence length (lifers: take heed!)

  • Many of the crimes that can land you in prison are themselves risk factors for dangerous, life-threatening infectious diseases. Such crimes are inevitably more rampant behind bars. I.V. drug use and high-risk sexual behaviors are the most notorious examples : the incidence of AIDS among prisoners can be as much as fourteen times that of the general population.

  • Efforts by New York State prison authorities to curtail gang formation include rotation of suspect prisoners every few weeks. Unfortunately, this practice has exacerbated the spread of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis. The ubiquitous jailhouse habit of chain-smoking cigare\ttes is also a contributing factor to the spread of T.B. Tuberculosis and HIV together are as good as an electric chair.

  • Other sexually-transmitted diseases like chlamydia, syphilis, and hepatitis-B are endemic to the penal environment. Gonorrhea alone is eleven times more prevalent among prisoners than in the general population. Don't let 'em make you a bride!

  • Prison tattoos are a great way to get AIDS!