Whats The Worst That Could Happen
Over time, HIV and AIDS keep your body from being able to fight off diseases. People who have HIV are at a higher risk for certain serious or life-threatening infections. HIV can cause dangerous weight loss, mental problems, cancer, blindness, and even death. A mother who has HIV can pass it on to her baby before the baby is born, during childbirth, or through her breast milk.
Ways Hiv Cannot Be Spread
HIV is not spread by:
- Air or water
- Mosquitoes, ticks or other insects
- Saliva, tears, or sweat that is not mixed with the blood of a person with HIV
- Shaking hands hugging sharing toilets sharing dishes, silverware, or drinking glasses or engaging in closed-mouth or social kissing with a person with HIV
- Drinking fountains
How Can You Protect Yourself From Getting Hiv
If youre sexually active, the best way to avoid HIV is by being mutually monogamous with someone whos been tested for HIV and is HIV negative. Using a condom every time you have vaginal or anal sex greatly reduces your risk of getting HIV. Make sure youre putting it on right and check that expiration date! When a condom is past its expiration date, it starts to break down and is less effective at preventing STDs and pregnancy. This can also happen when a condom is stored in a place that is too hot or too moist. If the condom you have is past its expiration date or seems dry, sticky or stiff because it wasn’t stored properly, it’s best to throw that condom away and get a new one. You can get free condoms here.
People who are at a very high risk of getting HIV may want to consider using Pre-exposure prophylaxis to lower their chances of getting infected with HIV. PrEP is a medication that is approved for daily use to help prevent an HIV-negative person from getting HIV. Learn more about PrEP, including how to get it, here.
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Hiv Cure Myths Debunked
9 HIV Cure Myths Debunked
A few months ago, a man living with HIV reached out to the 2BeatHIV project to learn more about HIV and HIV cure research. The 2BeatHIV project is a research project at UNC Chapel Hill that uses crowdsourcing to identify new ideas from community members, organizations, and businesses about ways to engage the public about HIV cure research. He told us that he was scared to get on medication because of all of the myths he heard about what the medicine could do to him. Specifically, some people told him that a bee sting could cure HIV. Unfortunately for this young man and others like him, myths about HIV cure do more damage that the actual disease.
Myths about HIV cure are fairly common around the world, including the United States. Indeed, there is a belief among some African Americans living with HIV that the government is purposefully withholding an HIV vaccine or cure from the public. Some PLWH also believe that dietary supplements and alternative medicine will cure HIV. Given the pervasive nature of HIV cure myths, it is important to know the facts about the current state of HIV cure research and try to address some of the most common myths.
Here are the 9 most common questions and myths we have encountered through our work and in US popular culture.
UNC Science Short: Can kick and kill cure HIV?
Check this article to learn more:HIV-Positive and Undetectable: What Does It Really Mean?
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Most Popular From Time
Yu cautions that the findings may not be generalizable to most HIV patients. Both of her patients belong to a group known as elite controllers, or people who are able to suppress HIV at very low, often undetectable levels with their immune systems, without the help of anti-HIV drugs. Researchers around the world are studying these people intensively its not clear what percentage of those infected with the virus are able to naturally contain it with their immune systems, but Yu believes that the two patients she described suggest that there may be more. Shes hoping that hearing about the first two will encourage others to get tested and studied, so scientists can better understand what aspect of their immune systems are providing such an effective way to block HIV.
Many immune factors could be playing a role, she says. Now that we have a second case, there are probably many cases out there that may not know they have a sterilizing cure. Some may not even be aware they are infected. We are hoping to attract more patients if we have a cohort of these extremely rare cases, then that will allow us to really analyze their immune responses in more depth and breadth and hopefully give us a hint about what immune factors contribute most to this status. Then we can apply what we learn to the general population.
How Do You Know You Have Hiv
You or your partner can have HIV and not know it. It can be months or years before you feel sick or have any serious signs, but you can still pass HIV to others. Though some people have no symptoms, signs of HIV may include: rapid weight loss, fever, diarrhea, night sweats, or feeling very tired. The only way to know for sure is to get tested.
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Fungal Infection Can Advance To An Aids
Candidiasis, commonly called thrush, is a fungal infection caused by strains of Candida, a type of yeast. People living with HIV infection are more prone to candidiasis. It is not an uncommon condition and generally manifests when a person’s immune response is low.
The Candida yeast itself is present in most human beings, within the natural flora of the mouth and digestive tract, as well as on the skin. It is only when changes to these systems occur that Candida can actively thrive, usually manifesting with superficial infection.
However, when the immune system is severely compromised, as can happen with untreated HIV, Candida can become invasive and spread throughout the body, causing severe illness and possibly death. Learn more about how this fungal infection can affect you and what you can do to lower your risk.
Hiv Rash: What Does It Look Like And How Is It Treated
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Rash as an early symptom of HIV
A rash is a symptom of HIV that usually occurs within the first two months after contracting the virus. Like other initial symptoms of HIV, its easy to mistake this rash for a symptom of another viral infection. Therefore, its important to learn how to identify this rash and how to treat it.
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Treatment Reduces The Amount Of Hiv In The Blood
- The amount of HIV in the blood is called viral load.
- Taking your HIV medicine as prescribed will help keep your viral load low and your CD4 cell count high.
- HIV medicine can make the viral load very low . Viral suppression is defined as having less than 200 copies of HIV per milliliter of blood.
- HIV medicine can make the viral load so low that a test cant detect it .
- If your viral load goes down after starting HIV treatment, that means treatment is working. Continue to take your medicine as prescribed.
- If you skip your medications, even now and then, you are giving HIV the chance to multiply rapidly. This could weaken your immune system, and you could become sick.
- Getting and keeping an undetectable viral load is the best way to stay healthy and protect others.
Doctors Say Experimental Treatment May Have Rid Man Of Hiv
A Brazilian man infected with the AIDS virus has shown no sign of it for more than a year since he stopped HIV medicines after an intense experimental drug therapy aimed at purging hidden, dormant virus from his body, doctors reported Tuesday.
The case needs independent verification and it’s way too soon to speculate about a possible cure, scientists cautioned.
“These are exciting findings but they’re very preliminary,” said Dr. Monica Gandhi, an AIDS specialist at the University of California, San Francisco. “This has happened to one person, and one person only,” and it didn’t succeed in four others given the same treatment, she said.
Another UCSF specialist, Dr. Steven Deeks, said: “This is not a cure,” just an interesting case that merits more study.
The case was described at an AIDS conference where researchers also disclosed an important prevention advance: A shot of an experimental medicine every two months worked better than daily Truvada pills to help keep uninfected gay men from catching HIV from an infected sex partner. Hundreds of thousands of people take these “pre-exposure prevention” pills now and the shot could give a new option, almost like a temporary vaccine.
If the Brazil man’s case is confirmed, it would be the first time HIV has been eliminated in an adult without a bone marrow or stem cell transplant. Independent experts want to see whether his remission lasts and for the intense drug combination that he received to undergo more testing.
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An Argentinian Womans Immune System Helps Her Get Rid Of Hiv Without Drugs Or Treatment
In a rare case, a woman has managed to get rid of herself of HIV without drugs or treatment in Argentina. This is the second documented case of its kind in the world. Well, doctors believe the patient’s immune system cleared the virus on its own. Tests on more than a billion of her cells found no viable trace of the infection, Archives of Internal Medicine reports. The news has gone viral on social media. BBC news has shared the news which has grabbed everyones attention.
If this process could be harnessed, it might offer a way to wipe out or effectively cure HIV, experts say. The findings are further proof that a few people are born with natural resilience to HIV. Recently, Adam Castillejo, from London, was able to stop taking his daily HIV pills after receiving a donor stem-cell treatment for cancer he also had. His HIV-infected cells were wiped out and replaced during cancer therapy. His donor was one of the 1 percent of people born with genes that prevent HIV from entering and infecting cells.
To note, HIV is a virus that attacks the body’s immune system. If HIV is not treated, it can lead to AIDS . One can get HIV from contact with infected blood, semen, or vaginal fluids. Most people get the virus by having unprotected sex with someone who has HIV. The most dangerous viral STD is the human immunodeficiency virus , which leads to AIDS. Other incurable viral STDs include human papilloma virus , hepatitis B and genital herpes.
What Should I Do Until Theres A Cure For Hiv
For now, the best thing to do for your health is to test regularly for HIV. Testing is the only way to know for sure if you have the virus.
If youve already tested and your result is positive, youll be advised to start antiretroviral treatment as soon as possible. Treatment is the only way to manage HIV and prevent it from damaging your immune system. It also reduces the risk of passing HIV on to your sexual partners. With treatment, people living with HIV can have long and healthy lives.
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Effective Ways To Prevent Hiv/aids
The human immunodeficiency virus destroys immune cells which fight infection. This makes it difficult for your body to fight off infections and certain kinds of cancer. Without proper treatment, an HIV infection can progress to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome or AIDS, a stage where your immune system is seriously damaged and you get a number of severe illnesses known as opportunistic infections.1
HIV spreads through contact with body fluids like blood, semen, pre-seminal fluids, vaginal fluids, rectal fluids, or breast milk from an infected person. In the United States, this virus is mostly spread by having sex with or sharing syringes or other injection equipment with someone who is infected. It can also be transmitted from a mother to her child during the course of the pregnancy, while breastfeeding, or during childbirth.2 Although the number of people being infected with HIV has been declining, it still remains a cause of concern with thousands of new cases being diagnosed every year.3 But take heart, there are things you can do to protect yourself from this dangerous infection.
Here are some ways to keep yourself safe.
Candidiasis In Hiv Infection
Because an active HIV infection depletes an individual’s immune response, candidiasis is commonly noted in people living with the virus.
While it can present superficially even in those on antiretroviral therapy , it is most frequently noted in people with severely compromised immune systems and often serves as a warning sign for the development of more serious HIV-related illnesses.
When an HIV infection is left untreated and a person’s CD4 count dips beneath 200 cells/mL , the risk of invasive candidiasis is profoundly increased. As a result, candidiasis of the esophagus, bronchi, trachea or lungs is today classified as an AIDS-defining condition.
The risk of candidiasis is not only linked to a person’s immune status but to the level of viral activity as measured by the HIV viral load. Therefore, even in people with more advanced HIV infection, the implementation of ART can provide benefits by way of disease avoidanceand not only of Candida infections but other opportunistic infections, as well.
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Screen And Treat For Hiv During Pregnancy
If youre pregnant, you should get tested for HIV. If you do have HIV, taking the appropriate medicines religiously can greatly lower the risk of transmitting it to your baby. In fact, if you start treatment early enough, you can reduce the risk to about 1% or lower.9
Breast milk contains HIV. So if you have HIV, you can avoid transmitting it to your baby after delivery by not breastfeeding.10
Antiretroviral Therapy As A Cure
It has been shown that treating the virus within the first 48 hours of exposure can significantly reduce the size of the HIV reservoir hidden in the body. This method is suitable for certain people , but will not work for everyone. In infants born to HIV-positive mothers, those who started ARTs within 6 to 12 months of birth had reduced mortality rates and a smaller HIV reservoir.However, many people do not get access to HIV treatment early enough and many people do not realise they have HIV until months after they are first exposed. This is another reason why it is important to go for an HIV test regularly so that you always know your status and can act quickly if you do become infected.Overall, researchers feel that ARTs alone will not make a cure strategy. Instead, ARTs might make up part of a cure package. The complexity of HIV infectionwhich establishes difficult-to-eliminate viral reservoirs very earlymeans that prompt ART alone may not be sufficient as an HIV cure strategy.
Red Light | Travis Goodspeed via Flickr
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How Is Hiv Treated
HIV is treated with HIV medications . These medications have to be taken as prescribed by your doctor. They cannot get rid of HIV but they can keep it under control.
If you are diagnosed with HIV, the sooner you start treatment, the better it is for your health.
Taking HIV treatment exactly as prescribed and maintaining a suppressed viral load also prevents HIV transmission.
Without HIV treatment, your immune system can become too weak to fight off serious illnesses, and you can eventually become sick with life-threatening infections and cancers. This is called AIDS . But thanks to effective HIV treatment, these days most people with HIV never get AIDS.
Dr Luc Montagnier On Getting Rid Of Hiv Naturally
Dr. Luc Montagnier, 2008 Nobel Prize winner for discovering HIV, describes patients ability to get rid of HIV naturally if the immune system is supported, and points to the profit motive that stands in the way of this remedy and research.
Dr. Luc Montagnier: âWe can be exposed to HIV many times without being chronically infected. Our immune system will get rid of the virus within a few weeks, if you have a good immune system.â
Interviewer : If you have a good immune system, then your body can naturally get rid of HIV?
Dr. Luc Montagnier: Yes.
Interviewer: If you take a poor African, whos been infected and you build up their immune system, is it possible for them to also naturally get rid of it?
Dr. Luc Montagnier: I would think so.
Interviewer: Thats an importantâ¦
Dr. Luc Montagnier: Its important knowledge which is completely neglected. People always think of drugs and vaccine.
Interviewer: There is no money in nutrition, right?
Dr. Luc Montagnier: There is no profit, yes.
From House of Numbers, the award-winning film, currently on the festival circuit. Visit HouseofNumbers.com for review, biographies, and more video.
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