Can Herbal Medicine Cure Hiv
No. Some people choose to take alternative forms of medicine, such as herbal medicines, as a natural way of treating HIV. However, herbal remedies do not work.
Taking herbal medicines can be dangerous as they will not protect your immune system from infection. They may also interact poorly with antiretrovirals if you are taking them alongside treatment. The only way you can stay healthy when living with HIV is to take antiretroviral treatment as prescribed by your doctor or healthcare professional, and to attend viral load monitoring appointments to make sure your treatment is working.
How Does Someone Get Hiv
The most common way people get HIV is through unprotected anal or vaginal sex with someone with HIV who is not aware of their status or not on antiretrovirals , the medications used to treat HIV. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention , HIV transmission through oral sex is extremely rare.
Sharing used needles, syringes, or other drug preparation equipment increases risk of getting HIV.
HIV can be passed from mother to child during pregnancy, birth and through breastfeeding, although this risk can be almost eliminated with treatment.
HIV is not spread through sharing glasses or plates, food, holding hands, toilet seats, or other casual contact.
You cannot get HIV through closed-mouth or social kissing or saliva.
As important as knowing how HIV is spread, is knowing how it is NOT. HIV is not spread by sharing glasses or plates, food, holding hands, toilet seats, or other casual contact.
You cannot get HIV through closed-mouth or social kissing or saliva.
How Is Hiv Passed Through Needles And Other Drug Use Or Body Work Equipment
HIV can be passed through blood that remains in used needles or other drug injection equipment, even if the amount of blood is so small it cant be seen. When a used needle containing blood with HIV breaks the skin of another person, HIV can get directly into their bloodstream. Once inside the bloodstream it can then cause a permanent infection. In the same way, HIV can be passed on by reusing unsterilized equipment for tattooing or piercing and through accidental needlestick injuries.
Sharing needles or other equipment used to inject drugs is the most common way that HIV is transmitted through broken skin. When a person injects drugs, blood can get into the needle/syringe or on other equipment they are using to inject or prepare their drugs. When someone uses a needle/syringe that has already been used by another person, there is a possibility that blood containing HIV is present. When a person prepares and injects drugs using shared equipment, blood that may contain HIV can directly enter their bloodstream through the broken skin. This is an efficient mode of transmission because the immune cells are the only natural defence against this type of HIV transmission. A larger amount of residual blood in the needle/syringe or other equipment and a higher amount of HIV in the blood can both increase the risk of injection-related HIV transmission.
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What Happens Once Hiv Gets Into The Body
Once HIV gets into the body, it needs to infect immune cells and make copies of itself to cause a permanent infection.
HIV cannot replicate on its own it needs to take over cells within the body to replicate. To do this it targets specific immune cells called CD4 T cells as well as other immune cells. HIV enters and takes control of the cell and starts to replicate. New copies of the virus are released into the blood that can then infect more immune cells.
If the virus can replicate for one to three days without being stopped, it can then spread to other parts of the body and establish a permanent infection. The bodys immune system defences are sometimes able to defeat HIV before it spreads and causes a permanent infection. Taking pre-exposure prophylaxis or post-exposure prophylaxis can also stop HIV from replicating and being able to establish a permanent infection.
About two-thirds of people newly infected with HIV experience symptoms of acute infection such as fever, chills, a rash, muscle aches, sore throat, swollen lymph nodes, fatigue, night sweats and mouth ulcers, which may last from a few days to a few weeks.
Why Have Some Populations Been More Affected By Hiv Than Others
One reason some groups and geographic areas have been more affected by HIV than others is because the HIV prevalence the percent of the population that has HIV is already high. In other words, the chances of coming in contact with the virus is greater.
A common misperception is that groups with higher rates of HIV are acting less responsibly. In fact, research shows that this is not the case. Groups more at-risk for HIV are generally found to get tested more frequently, use condoms more often, and take other precautions to protect against HIV as compared with other groups. The chance of being exposed to the virus is just greater in these social networks and so the response must also be greater.
Choosing if and when to tell someone that you have HIV is a personal decision.
Having trusted friends and/or family who know your HIV status may help you manage your diagnosis.
Having this conversation may bring up a range of emotions. Some things you may want to consider when sharing this information:
If you dont have someone in your life you feel you can share this information with or want added support check out a local support group. You can talk with other people living with HIV and also get help from experts. Whats most important is that you get the support and care you deserve!
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Can I Get Hiv From Getting A Tattoo Or Body Piercing
A risk of HIV transmission does exist if instruments contaminated with infected blood are either not sterilized or disinfected or are used inappropriately between clients. It is recommended that instruments that are intended to penetrate the skin be used once, then disposed off or thoroughly cleaned and sterilized. Personal service workers who do tattooing or body piercing should be educated about how HIV is transmitted and take precautions to prevent transmission of HIV and other blood-borne infections in their settings. If you are considering getting a tattoo or having your body pierced, ask staff at the establishment what procedures they use to prevent the spread of HIV and other blood-borne infections, such as hepatitis B virus.
How To Prevent Transmission
Between 2% and 6% of adults infected with hepatitis B virus will develop chronic hepatitis B. Chronic hepatitis B can lead to liver failure and liver cancer, so protecting yourself is important.
The hepatitis B vaccine is safe for almost everyone and about 95% effective for providing long-term protection against hepatitis B infection.
While anyone can benefit from the vaccine, people who are at a greater risk of being exposed to the virus because of their work, lifestyle or medical history are strongly encouraged to be immunized. In many countries, babies born to infected mothers get vaccinated at birth. All babies born in the United States are routinely vaccinated.
Hepatitis B immune globulin , is another way to prevent hepatitis B infection in babies born to infected mothers or after exposure to the virus. This uses concentrated antibodies to provide immediate protection. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it is given as a shot and can provide short-term protection against hepatitis B.
Because the hepatitis B vaccine does not protect against HIV, hepatitis C or other diseases spread through sex and contact with blood, it’s still important to keep using basic protective strategies. Practicing safer sex and not sharing needles are recommended even if you’re immune to hepatitis B.
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Does Hiv Viral Load Affect Getting Or Transmitting Hiv
Yes. Viral load is the amount of HIV in the blood of someone who has HIV. Taking HIV medicine daily as prescribed can make the viral load very lowso low that a test cant detect it .
People with HIV who take HIV medicine daily as prescribed and get and keep an undetectable viral load have effectively no risk of transmitting HIV to an HIV-negative partner through sex.
HIV medicine is a powerful tool for preventing sexual transmission of HIV. But it works only as long as the HIV-positive partner gets and keeps an undetectable viral load. Not everyone taking HIV medicine has an undetectable viral load. To stay undetectable, people with HIV must take HIV medicine every day as prescribed and visit their healthcare provider regularly to get a viral load test. Learn more.
A Little Bit About Hiv Itself
The human immunodeficiency virus was recognized at the end of the 20th century , when at the same time the virus was discovered in two scientific laboratories. One of them was located in France , the other â in the USA . A year earlier, his current name was acquired immunodeficiency syndrome , which, as it turned out, is the final phase of HIV infection.
When a new unknown retrovirus was isolated and given the name HTLV-III, it was also suggested that this particular virus could be the cause of such a terrible disease as AIDS. Further studies have confirmed this hypothesis, and humanity has learned of a new danger that can be killed without weapons.
HIV is one of the varieties of viral pathologies, characterized by a sluggish course. The incubation period, lasting from 3 weeks to 3 months, and the latent stage, the duration of which can be 11-12, and sometimes more than years, proceed without any obvious symptoms. However, during this period, almost complete destruction of immunity occurs.
The human immunodeficiency virus itself is considered unstable. It can not exist outside the carrierâs body , however, in each specific case the virus is somewhat modified, which allows it to survive and excludes the possibility of the invention of an effective antiviral vaccine.
The virus is able to nest in any physiological fluids, including saliva and cerebrospinal fluid, but its concentration there is negligible, as, however, and the risk of infection with their participation.
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How Could You Get Hiv From Contact With Blood
The risk of HIV transmission through blood comes when the person has a detectable viral load and their blood enters another persons body or comes into contact with a mucous membrane. These are parts of the body with wet, absorbent skin such as the:
- inside of the anus
Theres also a risk if blood from a person who has a detectable viral load comes into contact with a cut or broken skin, giving HIV a way through the skin and into someones bloodstream. If blood gets onto skin that isnt broken, there is no risk.
In a medical setting, its possible for HIV to be transmitted by someone accidentally cutting themselves with a blade or needle they have used to treat a person living with HIV.
This is called a needlestick injury. The risk of being infected in this way is very low. However, if someone thinks they have been exposed to HIV through a needlestick injury, post-exposure prophylaxis may be an option.
Why Is Hiv Not Spread By Mosquitos
Have you ever wondered why mosquito-transmitted infections were responsible for shutting down the first attempt to build the Panama Canal or are able to kill hundreds of thousands of children each year in Africa, yet no one has ever been infected with HIV from a mosquito bite?
The answer lies in the nature of the mosquito, but even more so in the nature of HIV.
If you were around during the early days of AIDS, especially in the early 1980s, before the means of transmission was firmly established, AIDS was pure terror. People were worried about eating in restaurants in Greenwich Village, swimming in pools, and even having an infected kid in the same classroom with their children. Looking back it seems almost impossible that Ryan White, a 13-year old boy who contracted HIV from a blood transfusion in 1984, would not be allowed to return to his school in Indiana because of parents’ fear. Even as late as the 1990s the fear remained.
In 1991 Lakers’ star Magic Johnson revealed he had contracted HIV and immediately retired. But in 1992 Johnson came out of retirement to play in the NBA All-Star Game. During a mid-court tribute to Johnson, all the players walked onto the floor to hug him – one at a time. The expressions on many of their faces were unmistakable: “I don’t want to hug this guy.” Other players told reporters off the record that they didn’t want to guard him during the game.
Table 1. Some pathogens that are transmitted by mosquitos
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When A Loved One Tells You They Have Hiv
When a friend or family member shares that they have HIV, it shows they trust you.
One of the best things you can do is listen without judgment and offer your love and support.
Allow them to guide the conversation and share the level of detail that is comfortable for them. Let them know you are here to provide whatever help they may need. Support them in getting into care and on treatment.
Some things to keep in mind if someone tells you they have HIV:
- HIV is not a death sentence. With ongoing treatment you can live a normal, healthy lifespan.
- In addition to keeping an individual healthy, treatment also prevents the spread of the virus.
- HIV is not spread through casual contact.
- It is possible to have healthy intimate relationships. There are more options than ever to prevent the spread of HIV and keep you both healthy.
- Keep it confidential. It is not your information to share and the consequences of doing so can be serious.
- Your support will help them be healthier.
Getting into and staying in care is critical to living well with HIV. Given the clear benefits, its recommended that people diagnosed with HIV start treatment as soon as possible.
You can show your support by offering to go with loved ones with HIV to appointments or to pick up their prescriptions. Keeping up with care and treatment is very important. If someone with HIV stops taking their medications, they can get very sick.
How Do You Get Or Transmit Hiv
You can only get HIV by coming into direct contact with certain body fluids from a person with HIV who has a detectable viral load. These fluids are:
- Semen and pre-seminal fluid
- Rectal fluids
- Vaginal fluids
- Breast milk
For transmission to occur, the HIV in these fluids must get into the bloodstream of an HIV-negative person through a mucous membrane open cuts or sores or by direct injection.
People 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.
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Tattoos And Body Piercings
- There are no known cases in the United States of anyone getting HIV this way.
- However, it is possible to get HIV from tattooing or body piercing if the equipment used for these procedures has someone elses blood in it or if the ink is shared. This is more likely to happen when the person doing the procedure is unlicensed because of the potential for unsanitary practices such as sharing needles or ink.
- If you get a tattoo or a body piercing, be sure that the person doing the procedure is properly licensed and that they use only new or sterilized needles, ink, and other supplies.
The Infectious Myth Busted Part : Hiv Transmission Rare Or Non
For those who believe HIV is a highly infectious virus, theyve probably never seen Nancy Padians 1996 study which followed 176 discordant couples for 10 years. These couples regularly slept together and had unprotected sex. There were no HIV transmissions from the positive partner to the negative partner during the entirety of the study. A few revealing highlights:
Heterosexual Transmission of Human Immunodeficiency Virus in Northern California: Results from a Ten-year Study
Over time, the authors observed increased condom use and no new infections.
We followed 175 HIV-discordant couples over time, for a total of approximately 282 couple-years offollow-up . Because of deaths as well as the break-up of couples, attrition was severe only 175 couples are represented in table 3. The longest duration of follow-up was 12 visits . We observed no seroconversions after entry into the study.
At last follow-up, couples were much more likely to be abstinent or to use condoms consistently, and were much less likely to practice anal intercourse . Nevertheless, only 75 percent reported consistent condomuse in the 6 months prior to their final follow-up visit. Forty-seven couples who remained in follow-up for 3 months to 6 years used condoms intermittently, and no seroconversions occurred among exposed partners.
Not so, according to the trustworthy people at the CDC. Keep in mind, these are their best case numbers/estimates:
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Means And Requirements For Hiv Transmission
People may become infected with HIV if they engage in specific risk behaviors or if they are exposed through needlestick injuries . Other blood contact with mucous membranes or non-intact skin provides a possible, but not probable, chance of transmission.
HIV is transmitted through:
- Unprotected anal, vaginal, and oral intercourse
- Sharing needles or other injection equipment
- A mother passing the virus to her baby either before or during birth
- An infected woman breastfeeding her infant
- Accidental needlestick injuries, or infected body fluid coming into contact with the broken skin or mucous membranes of another person
- A transfusion prior to 1986 of HIV-infected blood or blood products
In extremely rare cases, HIV can be transmitted by sharing razors or toothbrushes, if infected blood from one person was deposited on the toothbrush or razor and the blood entered the bloodstream of another person.
The transmission of HIV depends upon:
- The availability of the infectious agent in sufficient quantity
- The viability of the infectious agent
- The virulence of the infectious agent
- The ability of the infectious agent to reach the bloodstream, mucous membranes, or broken skin of a potential host
One of the predictors of the infectious level of an HIV-positive person is viral load, which is how much HIV is present in the bloodstream. Studies show a clear connection between higher viral load in the blood and increased transmissibility of HIV.
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