Protecting Hospital Workers From Hiv
If a hospital worker has an accident involving your blood, you may be asked to allow the hospital to test your blood for HIV, hepatitis C and hepatitis B.;
PEP is the use of antiretroviral drugs to prevent HIV following a high-risk exposure. Ideally, PEP is commenced within 72 hours of an exposure. PEP has been shown to significantly reduce the risk of HIV infection following exposures to HIV.
In such circumstances, if you were unaware of your status and your blood tested positive for HIV, hepatitis B or hepatitis C, it would also enable you to access the appropriate treatment for your condition.;
There are new drugs available for treatment of hepatitis C that result in cure of that infection. Both hepatitis B and HIV have treatments available that can keep people with these infections well.
Why Is Hiv Treatment Important
Getting and staying on HIV treatment because it reduces the amount of HIV in your blood to a very low level. This keeps you healthy and prevents illness. There is also a major prevention benefit. People living with HIV who take HIV medication daily as prescribed and get and keep an undetectable viral load have effectively no risk of sexually transmitting HIV to their HIV-negative partners. This is called treatment as prevention.
If left untreated, HIV attacks your immune system and can allow different types of life-threatening infections and cancers to develop. If your CD4 cell count falls below a certain level, you are at risk of getting an opportunistic infection. These are infections that dont normally affect people with healthy immune systems but that can infect people with immune systems weakened by HIV infection. Your health care provider may prescribe medicines to prevent certain infections.
HIV treatment is most likely to be successful when you know what to expect and are committed to taking your medicines exactly as prescribed. Working with your health care provider to develop a treatment plan will help you learn more about HIV and manage it effectively.
How Does A Person Get Hiv
HIV can only be passed by these five body fluids:
- vaginal fluid
- breast milk
HIV can be passed when one of these fluids from a person with HIV gets into the bloodstream of another personthrough broken skin, the opening of the penis or the wet linings of the body, such as the vagina, rectum or foreskin. HIV cannot be passed through healthy, unbroken skin.
The two main ways that HIV can be passed are:
- through sex
- by sharing needles or other equipment to inject drugs
HIV can also be passed:
- to a fetus or baby during pregnancy, birth or breastfeeding
HIV cannot be passed by:
- shaking hands, working or eating with someone who has HIV
- hugs or kisses
- swimming pools, toilet seats or water fountains
- insects or animals
Since November 1985, all blood products in Canada are checked for HIV, to ensure that it is safe to get a blood transfusion. And there is no chance of getting HIV from donating blood.
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Early Symptoms Of Hiv
The first few weeks after someone contracts HIV is called the acute infection stage.
During this time, the virus reproduces rapidly. The persons immune system responds by producing HIV antibodies, which are proteins that take measures to respond against infection.
During this stage, some people have no symptoms at first. However, many people experience symptoms in the first month or so after contracting the virus, but they often dont realize HIV causes those symptoms.
This is because symptoms of the acute stage can be very similar to those of the flu or other seasonal viruses, such as:
- they may be mild to severe
- they may come and go
- they may last anywhere from a few days to several weeks
Early symptoms of HIV can include:
- upset stomach
Because these symptoms are similar to common illnesses like the flu, the person who has them might not think they need to see a healthcare provider.
And even if they do, their healthcare provider might suspect the flu or mononucleosis and might not even consider HIV.
Whether a person has symptoms or not, during this period their viral load is very high. The viral load is the amount of HIV found in the bloodstream.
A high viral load means that HIV can be easily transmitted to someone else during this time.
Initial HIV symptoms usually resolve within a few months as the person enters the chronic, or clinical latency, stage of HIV. This stage can last many years or even decades with treatment.
Is Hiv Curable If Caught Early
There is no cure for HIV yet. Antiretroviral treatment can, however, control the infection limiting the virus multiplication in the body. With proper treatment, people with HIV can lead long and healthy lives. Treatment lowers the viral load , which not only protects the person from progressing into an advanced stage of the disease but also reduces the chances of transmission of the virus to others.
It is important to get tested for HIV in the early stages of infection to minimize the damage to the immune system. Successful treatment aims to reduce HIV load to a level that is harmless to the body. However, some of the viruses may persist. Trials are underway for getting a safe and effective HIV vaccine.
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Hospital Policies That Protect You From Hiv And Other Infectious Diseases
To prevent the spread of HIV, hospitals follow strict infection prevention and control guidelines. All blood and body fluids from patients are treated as potentially infectious:
- Syringes and needles are single use and disposed of in approved sharps containers.;
- Reusable medical devices are decontaminated and sterilised after each patient use.
- Many medical devices are disposed of after single use.
- Healthcare workers wear protective equipment including gowns, gloves and eyewear when carrying out any procedures involving a patients blood or body fluids.
- All spilt blood and body fluids are cleaned up according to strict cleaning guidelines.
- Laundry is cleaned according to strict Australian Standards .
Whats The Hiv Window Period
As soon as someone contracts HIV, it starts to reproduce in their body. The persons immune system reacts to the antigens by producing antibodies .
The time between exposure to HIV and when it becomes detectable in the blood is called the HIV window period. Most people develop detectable HIV antibodies within 23 to 90 days after transmission.
If a person takes an HIV test during the window period, its likely theyll receive a negative result. However, they can still transmit the virus to others during this time.
If someone thinks they may have been exposed to HIV but tested negative during this time, they should repeat the test in a few months to confirm . And during that time, they need to use condoms or other barrier methods to prevent possibly spreading HIV.
Someone who tests negative during the window might benefit from post-exposure prophylaxis . This is medication taken after an exposure to prevent getting HIV.
PEP needs to be taken as soon as possible after the exposure; it should be taken no later than 72 hours after exposure but ideally before then.
Another way to prevent getting HIV is pre-exposure prophylaxis . A combination of HIV drugs taken before potential exposure to HIV, PrEP can lower the risk of contracting or transmitting HIV when taken consistently.
Timing is important when testing for HIV.
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How Can You Manage Hiv/aids
Receiving a diagnosis of a life-threatening illness is devastating. But the emotional, social and financial consequences of HIV/AIDS can make coping with this illness especially difficult for you, as well as your family.
At the end of 2013, 35 million people were living with HIV globally, according to the World Health Organisation, and 11.7 million people had access to antiretroviral therapy in low- and middle-income countries.Due to better and cheaper treatments, people with HIV are now living longer and with a better quality of life than ever before. However, it is crucial to surround yourself with a support network and to seek counselling.By making certain lifestyle choices, you can keep healthy and protect others. These include:
I Am Hiv Positive How Can I Prevent Passing Hiv To Others
Take HIV medicines daily. Treatment with HIV medicines helps people with HIV live longer, healthier lives. ART can’t cure HIV, but it can reduce the amount of HIV in the body . One of the main goals of ART is to reduce a person’s viral load to an undetectable level. An undetectable viral load means that the level of HIV in the blood is too low to be detected by a viral load test. People with HIV who maintain an undetectable viral load have effectively no risk of transmitting HIV to an HIV-negative partner through sex.
Here are some other steps you can take to prevent HIV transmission:
- Use condoms correctly every time you have sex.
- Talk to your partner about taking PrEP.
- If you inject drugs, don’t share your needles, syringes, or other drug equipment with your partner.
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Prevention And Control Measures For Hiv Infection And Aids
Even though HIV is preventable through effective public health measures, the HIV epidemic persists largely unchanged in the countries of the European Union and European Economic Area with around 30 000 newly reported diagnoses every year. ;
ECDC estimates that around 810 000 people are currently living with HIV in the EU/EEA of which 122 000 are not aware of their infection.
If diagnosed and treated early enough, people can live long and healthy lives with HIV. To reach the estimated 15% who are not aware of their infection, Europe needs to increase efforts to promote and facilitate more testing for HIV. And link those diagnosed to care.
Response should be strengthened and tailored to each countrys specific needs in order to control the HIV epidemic in Europe. This includes implementation of targeted, evidence-based HIV prevention programmes for key populations who are most at risk but might not be reached by current interventions like ;men who have sex with men, people who inject drugs and migrants from countries with generalised epidemics.;
How Do Hiv/aids Medicines Work
HIV/AIDS medicines reduce the amount of HIV in your body, which helps by
- Giving your immune system a chance to recover. Even though there is still some HIV in your body, your immune system should be strong enough to fight off infections and certain HIV-related cancers.
- Reducing the risk that you will spread HIV to others
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Sharing Needles And Injecting Equipment
If you inject drugs, this could expose you to HIV and other viruses found in blood, such as hepatitis C.
It’s important not to share needles, syringes, injecting equipment such as spoons and swabs, or the actual drugs or liquids used to dilute them.
Many local authorities and pharmacies offer needle exchange programmes, where used needles can be exchanged for clean ones.
If you’re a heroin user, consider enrolling in a methadone programme. Methadone can be taken as a liquid, so it reduces your risk of getting HIV.
A GP or drug counsellor should be able to advise you about both needle exchange programmes and methadone programmes.
If you’re having a tattoo or piercing, it’s important that a clean, sterilised needle is always used.
General Prevention Guidelines By Type Of Epidemic
Generally, it is more important to change the behavior of people who have highlevels of risk behavior than it is to change that of people with lower levels ofrisk behavior. However, the difference in the effectiveness between the twofalls as epidemics become more generalized, and as the average and maximum sizeof the connected components . Thus, in heavilyaffected countries, or those where the virus has the potential to spreadrapidly, prevention interventions are likely to become extremely cost-effectiveeven when targeted at individuals with relatively low levels of risk behavior.Consequently, countries with low-level and concentrated epidemics shouldemphasize interventions that target individuals at especially high risk ofbecoming infected or of transmitting the virus, whereas countries withgeneralized epidemics should also invest heavily in interventions that targetentire populations or population subgroups. Thus, any determination of thelikely effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of specific interventions inparticular circumstances requires an accurate understanding of the stage andnature of the national epidemic.
Generalized Low-Level Epidemic
In a generalized low-level epidemic, such as in some countries in Sub-SaharanAfrica , the emphasis on targeted interventions mustbe maintained or even strengthened. Interventions for broader populationsmust also be aggressively implemented. These prevention priorities shouldinclude the following:
Generalized High-Level Epidemic
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Researching An Hiv Cure: The Main Approaches
Although the stem cell approach has had some success in the past, its very dangerous for the patient. It would only be considered a viable option, if the person needed a stem cell transplant to treat another more deadly condition, such as very advanced leukaemia which, unlike HIV, doesnt have as many other safe and effective treatment options available.
While there is promising research being carried out in these areas, there is no viable cure on the horizon.
Prevention In Theory And Practice: Using Epidemic Profiles And Contextual Factorsto Inform Prevention Guidelines
Prevention studies and national experiences over the past 20 years strongly suggestthat prevention strategies are likely to be most effective when they are carefullytailored to the nature and stage of the epidemic in a specific country or community.UNAIDS has developed epidemiological categories for characterizing individualepidemics on the basis of prevalence of infection in particular subpopulations andin the general population .
As a complement to the guidance provided by the epidemic profile, recommend assessingthe prevalence of other STIs; estimating the extent of mixing between high- andlow-risk groups ; and estimating the prevalence of high-risk sexual behaviors in thepopulation . They also cite twoother critical contextual factors: the capacity of the health service and thesocial, economic, and legislative context, including social norms and attitudesabout sexual and drug use behaviors and the acceptance of breastfeeding. Contextualfactors that may play a role in the success of interventions include the status ofwomen, the stigmatization of high-risk groups, and the presence of armed conflictand social upheaval. Together, the epidemic profile and the context in which theepidemic occurs suggest various prevention strategies.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Hiv
After the first month or so, HIV enters the clinical latency stage. This stage can last from a few years to a few decades.
Some people dont have any symptoms during this time, while others may have minimal or nonspecific symptoms. A nonspecific symptom is a symptom that doesnt pertain to one specific disease or condition.
These nonspecific symptoms may include:
- headaches and other aches and pains
- swollen lymph nodes
- recurrent oral or vaginal yeast infections
As with the early stage, HIV is still transferable during this time even without symptoms and can be transmitted to another person.
However, a person wont know they have HIV unless they get tested. If someone has these symptoms and thinks they may have been exposed to HIV, its important that they get tested.
HIV symptoms at this stage may come and go, or they may progress rapidly. This progression can be slowed substantially with treatment.
With the consistent use of this antiretroviral therapy, chronic HIV can last for decades and will likely not develop into AIDS, if treatment was started early enough.
The cause of the rash determines:
- how it looks
- how it can be treated depends on the cause
How Can You Prevent Getting Or Transmitting Hiv Through Sex
There are several ways to prevent getting or transmitting HIV through anal or vaginal sex.
If you are HIV-negative, you can use HIV prevention medicine known as pre-exposure prophylaxis or post-exposure prophylaxis to protect yourself. You can also use other HIV prevention methods, below.
If you have HIV, the most important thing you can do to prevent transmission and stay healthy is to take your HIV medicine , every day, exactly as prescribed. People living with HIV who take HIV medicine daily as prescribed and get and keep an undetectable viral load have effectively no risk of sexually transmitting HIV to their HIV-negative partners. Read more about Treatment as Prevention. There also are other options to choose from, below.
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Is It Hard To Take These Drugs
The HIV medicines that currently are recommended are usually very simple and easy to take. Several drug combinations are available that package 3 separate medicines into only 1 pill, taken once a day, with minimal side effects.
For the great majority of people, HIV medicines are tolerable and effective, and let people with HIV live long and healthy lives. For some people, the drugs may be difficult to take every day, and for a small number, they cause serious side effects or don’t work well.
Once patients are on medications, they must work with their health care providers to find solutions for side effects and monitor how well the drugs are working.
The good news is that there are many excellent HIV medicines. Finding the right combination of medicines for each person is usually possible–a combination that controls the virus but does not cause side effects.
Can Hiv Pass From Mothers To Their Babies
Infection can pass from pregnant women living with HIV to their babies in the womb and during birth. Taking HIV medications during pregnancy and childbirth dramatically lowers the risk of a baby becoming infected with HIV.
After birth, transmission can occur through breast milk. The highest risk may be in the early months after birth. It is recommended that new mothers who are living with HIV formula-feed their babies rather than breast-feed.
If you are a woman living with HIV and you intend to become pregnant, or you find out that you have during your pregnancy, talk to your provider immediately about ways to minimize the chances that your baby will become infected, too.
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