I want to use a noun to describe the bad effects of AIDS on the population of a country. The context of the word is this sentence:

In this report, we also provide some statistics on the bad effects of AIDS on the population.

However, it seems that bad effects are not the appropriate words.

  • 2
    Do you strictly need a one word solution, or is a suitable replacement for 'bad effects' good? "adverse effects", "negative impacts", etc would all be perfectly reasonable in the given context.
    – Doc
    Dec 3, 2013 at 22:07
  • 1
    I thought of that, but the use of some word to mean 'negative' could be used to emphasize, rather than imply there are positives.
    – Doc
    Dec 3, 2013 at 22:23
  • 1
    "...the catastrophic consequences Aids has had on the population. This is quite an extreme expression and perhaps too emotive for a report but depending on the statistics it might very well be accurate.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Dec 4, 2013 at 0:17
  • Blight. Bummer.
    – Drew
    Feb 9, 2016 at 3:19
  • Nonsense. There was nothing linguistically wrong with the example, even if you or your mentor thought some kind of political correctness more important. If you think "bad effects are not the appropriate words" then why not take the trouble to explain why not? Jul 30, 2018 at 16:10

4 Answers 4


I find five alternatives to "bad effects on," with three different meanings, depending on what you prefer to say:

  • detriment to, the opposite of benefit to.
  • injury of or, better, harm to.
  • menace against or, better, threat to.

Of the five, injury probably does not work in your specific sentence, because it wants to repeat the word of, which the sentence already uses for another purpose. (There may exist alternate ways to reword your sentence entirely to evade the question and achieve an even more pleasing effect, but this is not what you have asked.)


Perhaps devastation

severe and widespread destruction or damage


I find seven alternatives to "bad effects on," with three different meanings, depending on what you prefer to say:

Problems, consequences, downsides, negatives, drawbacks, disadvantages, damages.

Edit: Adding "Fallout"

  • agua, do you have another? I ask because observed that you missed to type the full stop at the end of that 'sentence'. Dec 3, 2013 at 22:32
  • Elbe, could you explain why this answer is not helpful?
    – aguaviva
    Dec 3, 2013 at 23:08
  • Downvoter - any constructive criticism?
    – aguaviva
    Dec 3, 2013 at 23:42
  • 1
    Elberich Schneider offered you a good explanation. Your answer is a series of words some of which are worthy, others much less so. For example, disadvantages, which implies there are also positive aspects. But I strongly doubt anyone could suggest that there are any advantages to having AIDS.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Dec 4, 2013 at 0:12
  • Rather than downvoting it would have been more constructive to comment on my answer to improve it.
    – aguaviva
    Dec 4, 2013 at 9:28

Perhaps harm

For example:

The products are often rejected by watchdogs because of the potential harm to the environment.

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