What You Can Do To Reduce Stigma
You can help reduce stigma by being respectful, compassionate and non-judgemental. Model this behaviour for others when you witness stigmatizing behaviours.
When talking about HIV, certain terms can be stigmatizing. Be thoughtful about the words you use when discussing the topic.
Learn more about the facts of HIV. Treatment can lower the amount of virus in a person’s blood to a level that’s too low to be measured on a standard blood test. This means it’s undetectable.
People living with HIV on treatment who maintain an undetectable viral load have effectively no risk of transmitting HIV to their sexual partners.
Knowing and sharing these facts widely can help to reduce stigma. Share our Undetectable = Untransmittable infographic to help us raise awareness.
In addition, HIV is not transmitted through:
- healthy, unbroken skin
Hiv Stigma And Discrimination
HIV can prompt intense feelings in people, regardless of their HIV status. It is sometimes viewed with a sense of unacceptability or disgrace. A person with HIV may feel shame and despair about their status. An HIV-negative person may be fearful or angry when they discover someone has HIV. The relationship of these feelings to HIV is referred to as stigma.Felt stigma refers to deep feelings of shame and self-loathing, and the expectation of discrimination. It can have serious negative impacts on the health and wellbeing of people living with HIV by discouraging them from getting tested, receiving support, or taking treatment. It may also lead people to engage in high-risk behaviours that harm their health, and contribute to new HIV infections.Enacted stigma is the experience of unfair treatment by others. For people living with HIV this can be in the form of being treated differently and poorly, or through rejection, abuse, or discrimination.HIV stigma is particularly harmful when it overlaps with other factors that are stigmatised such as if a person uses drugs, is a sex worker, is trans or gender diverse.Breaking down stigma is a community response where:
If you have experienced stigma or discrimination from a health care provider, and are unable to resolve your complaint with them directly, contact the Health Complaints Commissioner
How Often Do You Need To Get Tested For Hiv
How often you should get tested depends on your personal practices, risk behaviours, and how often you engage in them.
For most people, it is important to have a full sexual health test at least once each year. This testing includes:
Even if you always use condoms, it is recommended you get tested annually as condoms dont provide 100% protection against HIV and STIs.
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What Is The Outlook For Someone With Hiv/aids
If you are diagnosed with HIV and you start ART soon after, your immune system will not be as compromised. If you continue to take your medicines every day, your outlook is very good.
ART can keep blood levels undetectable but cannot entirely rid the body of the virus . If you do not keep up on your medication, the virus goes back into the blood.
If you have HIV and dont treat it, it can take about 10 years to lead to AIDS. If you have AIDS and dont treat it, the survival rate is about three years.
It is so important to know that people who have HIV and who follow treatment guidelines are able to live full lives for nearly as long as HIV-negative people.
Hiv Infection And Aids
The human immunodeficiency virus remains one of the most important communicable diseases in Europe. It is an infection associated with serious disease, persistently high costs of treatment and care, significant number of deaths and shortened life expectancy.
HIV is a virus which attacks the immune system and causes a lifelong severe illness with a long incubation period.
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Questions To Ask Your Doctor
- Is there any sure way to avoid acquiring HIV?
- What is the best treatment for me?
- How can I avoid getting any infections that will make me very sick?
- How can I find support groups in my community?
- What diagnostic tests will you run?
- How often will I need to see my doctor?
- Will there be any side effects to my treatment?
- How does this affect my plans for having a family?
- Is it safe for me to breastfeed my baby?
- Will using a condom keep my sex partners from acquiring HIV?
- Should I follow a special diet?
Through Needles Or Other Instruments
Health care workers who are accidentally pricked with an HIV-contaminated needle have about a 1 in 300 chance of contracting HIV unless they are treated as soon as possible after exposure. Such treatment reduces the chance of infection to less than 1 in 1,500. The risk increases if the needle penetrates deeply or if the needle is hollow and contains HIV-contaminated blood rather than simply being coated with blood .
Infected fluid splashing into the mouth or eyes has less than a 1 in 1,000 chance of causing infection.
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Coronary Artery Disease In Hiv
With effective antiretroviral therapy , human immunodeficiency virus has become a largely manageable disease with a growing burden of chronic, non-communicable diseases. People living with HIV have elevated risks for coronary artery disease for several potential reasons, including chronic HIV-related inflammation and immune activation. This article aims to identify the epidemiology, mechanisms, and presentation of CAD in HIV with the ultimate goal of informing management in this admittedly data-sparse area.
MI in HIV: Epidemiology and Risk Factors
Studies in large cohorts have revealed significantly greater risks for myocardial infarction among HIV-infected persons compared with uninfected controls. When adjusting for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease risk factors, HIV-infected persons have a 1.5-fold to twofold increased risk of having CAD.1,2 Furthermore, compared with uninfected persons, HIV+ persons presenting with a first episode of acute coronary syndromes are, on average, a decade younger.3-5 An overview of factors that contribute to CAD in HIV is provided in Figure 1 and discussed in more detail below.
Figure 1: Mechanisms of Atherosclerosis and MI in HIV
HIV-Specific Factors Associated With MI: HIV Severity, Concomitant Comorbidities, and Medications
Traditional ASCVD Factors Associated With MI
Pathophysiology of CAD and MI in HIV
Presentation and Management of CAD
Prevention and Screening of CAD
Use As Gene Delivery Vectors
Lentivirus is primarily a research tool used to introduce a gene product into systems or animal models. Large-scale collaborative efforts are underway to use lentiviruses to block the expression of a specific gene using technology in high-throughput formats. Conversely, lentivirus are also used to stably over-express certain genes, thus allowing researchers to examine the effect of increased gene expression in a model system.
Another common application is to use a lentivirus to introduce a new gene into human or animal cells. For example, a model of mouse is corrected by expressing wild-type platelet-, the gene that is mutated in human hemophilia. Lentiviral infection has advantages over other gene-therapy methods including high-efficiency infection of dividing and non-dividing cells, long-term stable expression of a , and low immunogenicity.Lentiviruses have also been successfully used for of diabetic mice with the encoding , a therapy being considered for use in humans. Finally, lentiviruses have been also used to elicit an immune response against tumor antigens. These treatments, like most current gene therapy experiments, show promise but are yet to be established as safe and effective in controlled human studies. and lentiviral vectors have so far been used in more than 300 clinical trials, addressing treatment options for various diseases.
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Rash Related To Medication
While rash can be caused by HIV co-infections, it can also be caused by medication. Some drugs used to treat HIV or other conditions can cause a rash.
This type of rash usually appears within a week or 2 weeks of starting a new medication. Sometimes the rash will clear up on its own. If it doesnt, a change in medications may be needed.
Rash due to an allergic reaction to medication can be serious.
Other symptoms of an allergic reaction include:
- trouble breathing or swallowing
Stevens-Johnson syndrome is a rare allergic reaction to HIV medication. Symptoms include fever and swelling of the face and tongue. A blistering rash, which can involve the skin and mucous membranes, appears and spreads quickly.
When 30 percent of the skin is affected, its called toxic epidermal necrolysis, which is a life threatening condition. If this develops, emergency medical care is needed.
While rash can be linked with HIV or HIV medications, its important to keep in mind that rashes are common and can have many other causes.
An Old Disease With A New Name
The denialists say that AIDS is not a new disease, simply a collection of old ones grouped under a new name. It is true that people with HIV disease do not succumb directly to HIV infection, but to a well-known list of opportunistic pathogens such as Pneumocystis carinii, cytomegalovirus , and Mycobacterium avium complex . “Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome” refers to an illness that causes the collapse of the immune system, which in turn renders the body vulnerable to a series of potentially deadly infections that the body would otherwise have little trouble handing. HIV, the human immunodeficiency virus, is the cause of the collapse of the immune system.
Today, AIDS is far more widespread. But even in Africa, where people have long suffered from malnutrition, poor sanitation, and parasitic illnesses, doctors had not seen such widespread severely compromised immunity until HIV emerged. Moreover, AIDS is also common in urban areas, where malnutrition does not play as large a role as it does in rural Africa.
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Keep Taking Your Hiv Medication To Stay Undetectable
HIV is still in your body when your viral load is suppressed, even when it is undetectable. So, you need to keep taking your HIV medication daily as prescribed. When your viral load stays undetectable, you have effectively no risk of transmitting HIV to an HIV-negative partner through sex. If you stop taking HIV medication, your viral load will quickly go back up.
If you have stopped taking your HIV medication or are having trouble taking all the doses as prescribed, talk to your health care provider as soon as possible. Your provider can help you get back on track and discuss the best strategies to prevent transmitting HIV through sex while you get your viral load undetectable again.
Genome Organization And Replication
As with all retroviruses, lentiviruses have gag, pol and env genes, coding for viral proteins in the order: 5Â´-gag–pol–env-3Â´. Unlike other retroviruses, however, lentiviruses have two , and . They may also have additional accessory genes depending on the virus ” rel=”nofollow”> nef) whose products are involved in regulation of synthesis and processing viral RNA and other replicative functions. The is about 600 long, of which the U3 region is 450, the R sequence 100 and the U5 region some 70 nt long.
Retroviruses carry specific proteins within their capsids, which typically associate with the RNA genome. These proteins are typically involved in the early stages of genome replication, and include and . Reverse transcriptase is the virally encoded RNA-dependent DNA polymerase. The enzyme uses the viral RNA genome as a template for the synthesis of a complementary DNA copy. Reverse transcriptase also has RNaseH activity for destruction of the RNA-template. Integrase binds both the viral cDNA generated by reverse transcriptase and the host DNA. Integrase processes the LTR before inserting the viral genome into the host DNA. Tat acts as a trans-activator during transcription to enhance initiation and elongation. The Rev responsive element acts post-transcriptionally, regulating mRNA splicing and transport to the cytoplasm.
The lentiviral proteome consists of five major structural proteins and 3-4 non-structural proteins .
Structural proteins listed by size:
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Transmission Of Hiv Infection
The transmission of HIV requires contact with a body fluid that contains the virus or cells infected with the virus. HIV can appear in nearly any body fluid, but transmission occurs mainly through blood, semen, vaginal fluids, and breast milk. Although tears, urine, and saliva may contain low concentrations of HIV, transmission through these fluids is extremely rare, if it occurs at all.
HIV is not transmitted by casual contact or by close, nonsexual contact at work, school, or home. No case of HIV transmission has been traced to the coughing or sneezing of an infected person or to a mosquito bite. Transmission from an infected doctor or dentist to a patient is extremely rare.
HIV is usually transmitted in the following ways:
HIV is more likely to be transmitted if skin or a mucous membrane is torn or damagedeven if minimally.
In the United States, Europe, and Australia, HIV has been transmitted mainly through men who have sex with men and the sharing of needles among people who inject drugs, but transmission through heterosexual contact accounts for about one fourth of cases. HIV transmission in Africa, the Caribbean, and Asia occurs primarily between heterosexuals, and HIV infection occurs equally among men and women. In the United States, fewer than 25% of adults who have HIV infection are women. Before 1992, most American women with HIV were infected by injecting drugs with contaminated needles, but now most are infected through heterosexual contact.
The Differential Hiv Experience Of African
While African-Americans make up 12 percent of the U.S. population, they accounted for 46 percent of new HIV infections in 2010, substantially higher than the rate for Whites or Hispanics. The majority of these were men however, African-American women also have a high rate of HIV diagnosis nearly 20 times that of White women . More disheartening is that 1 in 16 African-American men and 1 in 32 African-American women will eventually be diagnosed with HIV.
The causes of this HIV health disparity are complex. HIV infection prevalence is higher and more broadly represented in the African- American community compared to the White population thus African-Americans are at increased risk of infection simply by choosing intimate partners within their own ethnic communities.24 Additionally, African-American communities experience high rates of other sexually transmitted infections, and some of these infections can significantly increase the risk of contracting HIV. African-Americans also tend to be diagnosed at later stages in the disease and therefore begin therapy later, increasing the length of time of their infectivity. Once engaged in HAART, African-Americans are more likely to discontinue therapy prematurely,25 risking resurgence of HIV infectivity and further health complications.
- Text Description: Diagnosis of HIV Infection Among Adults and Adolescents, by Transmission Category Graph
Male-to-male sexual contact: 61%
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How Is Hiv Transmitted Or Spread
The following are the means by which the HIV virus is spread:
Vertical transmission. HIV can be spread to babies born to, or breastfed by, mothers infected with the virus.
Sexual contact. In adults and adolescents, HIV is spread most commonly by sexual contact with an infected partner. The virus enters the body through the lining of the vagina, vulva, penis, rectum, or abraded or irritated tissues in the lining of the mouth through sexual activity.
Blood contamination. HIV may also be spread through contact with infected blood. However, due to the screening of donated blood for evidence of HIV infection, the risk of acquiring HIV from blood transfusions is extremely low.
Needles. HIV is frequently spread by sharing needles, syringes, or drug use equipment with someone who is infected with the virus. Transmission from patient to health care worker, or vice-versa, through accidental sticks with contaminated needles or other medical instruments, is rare.
No known cases of HIV/AIDS have been spread by the following:
Enlarged lymph nodes
An HIV-infected child is usually diagnosed with AIDS when the immune system becomes severely damaged or other types of infections occur. As the immune system deteriorates, complications begin to develop. The following are some common complications, or symptoms, of the onset of AIDS. However, each child may experience symptoms differently. Symptoms may include:
Having A Medication Routine
Taking HIV medication as prescribed is essential missing even a few doses might jeopardize the treatment.
A person should design a daily medication-taking routine that fits their treatment plan and schedule.
Sometimes, side effects keep people from sticking with their treatment plans. If any side effect is hard to manage, contact a healthcare provider. They can recommend a drug that is easier to tolerate and suggest other changes to the treatment plan.
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How Can I Reduce My Risk Of Getting Hiv
- Get tested for HIV. Talk to your partner about HIV testing and get tested before you have sex. Use this testing locator from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to find an HIV testing location near you.
- Choose less risky sexual behaviors. HIV is mainly spread by having anal or vaginal sex without a condom or without taking medicines to prevent or treat HIV.
- Use condoms every time you have sex. Read this fact sheet from CDC on how to use condoms correctly.
- Limit your number of sexual partners. The more partners you have, the more likely you are to have a partner with poorly controlled HIV or to have a partner with a sexually transmitted disease . Both of these factors can increase the risk of HIV transmission.
- Get tested and treated for STDs. Insist that your partners get tested and treated, too. Having an STD can increase your risk of getting HIV or spreading it to others.
- Talk to your health care provider about pre-exposure prophylaxis . PrEP is an HIV prevention option for people who don’t have HIV but who are at risk of getting HIV. PrEP involves taking a specific HIV medicine every day to reduce the risk of getting HIV through sex or injection drug use. For more information, read the ClinicalInfo fact sheet on Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis .
- Don’t inject drugs. But if you do, use only sterile drug injection equipment and water and never share your equipment with others.