Aids is becoming so widespread
The disease called aids is becoming very widespread in the United States. The
question is why. In the following paragraphs the answers to this question will be answered.
Aids is the final, life-threatening stage of infection with human immuondeficiency
virus (HIV). Aids stands for Acquired immunodeficiency virus syndrome. The name refers to
the fact that HIV severely damages the patient's disease fighting immune system. Cases of
AIDS were first identified in 1981 in the United States, but researchers have traced cases to as
early as 1959.
HIV can be present in the body for two to twelve or more years without
producing any notifying sign of illness. An infected person can transmit the virus to another
person whether or not the symptoms are present . Infection with HIV appears to be lifelong in
all who become infected. People infected with Hiv eventually develop symptoms that also may
be caused by another, less serious conditions. Some symptoms include enlarged lymph glands,
tiredness, fever, loss of weight, diarrhea, and night sweats.
AIDS is caused by two viruses that belong to a group called retroviruses. The virus
became known as HIV-1. In 1985, scientists in France identified another closely related virus
that produces AIDS. This such virus became known as HIV-2 and occurs mainly just in Africa.
The virus,HIV-1 is spread throughout the world . HIV
infects certain white blood cells, including T-helper cells and macrophages, that play key roles in
the functioning of the human immune system. The virus attaches to certain molecules found only
on the surface of cells. When an AIDS virus enters one of these cells, the virus inserts its genes
into the cell's reproductive system and uses to produce more HIV. The infection kills the CD-4
cell and spreads the AIDS viruses other CD-4 cells , where the process is repeated.
The number one reason why aids is becoming so widespread is through sexual
intercourse. The disease gets passed on from one person to another by having unprotected sex
with someone who is HIV positive or already has the disease AIDS. In the United States,
sexual transmission of HIV or AIDS has occurred mainly among homosexual and bisexual men.
It is becoming more frequent among heterosexual men and men. HIV is transmitted through all
forms of sexual intercourse. To prevent transmission of the AIDS virus, intimate sexual
with anyone who is or might be infected with the AIDS virus must be avoided. Many doctors
advise people who might be infected with HIV to use condoms during sexual intercourse. The
most effective preventative strategies are to reform from all sexual intimacy or restrict sexual
intimacy to one unaffected person .
The next best reason for the AIDS virus becoming so widespread is from HIV
of AIDS infected mother passing the disease to the fetus or baby. An infected pregnant women
can transmit the AIDS virus to her fetus even if she has no symptoms. Previous studies have
shown a 10 to 60 percent chance that an infected mother will pass HIV to her unborn fetus. If
the fetus escapes "in utero" threat , it may acquire the infection during delivery. Many doctors
now also think that an HIV, the virus which causes AIDS, mother can pass on the virus to her
baby after birth by breast feeding. In the largest study of mother-to-child HIV transmission to
date, Philippe Van de Perre at the AIDS Reference Laboratory in Kigali, Rwanda ,
demonstrates that women who test negative for AIDS at the time of delivery, but women who
become infected, can later pass the virus on to there infants, probably by breast feeding. Van de
Perre and a team of AIDS studied 212 pregnant women who tested negative for HIV when they
gave birth. Within 3 to 18 months later, 16 of these women tested positive for HIV. At some
point during the 18 month period, nine of the 16 infants tested positive to HIV, the virus that
causes. Previous studies have suggested that infected newborns may initially test negative, and
then test positive within the 3 months after birth. In some other cases, the study implicates
breast feeding as the route of HIV transmission. If babies acquired the HIV virus in the womb
or during the birth, these infants probably would have detectable amounts of HIV in there blood
Another way the AIDS virus is becoming widespread is through direct
with infected blood. People who inject drugs into their bodies can be exposed to infected blood
by sharing needles and syringes. Transfusion and transplant recipients and people with
hemophilia may contract the HIV virus from the blood, blood components, tissues, or organs of
infected donors. However, screening and testing of both donated blood and potential organ
donors have virtually eliminated this hazard. Health-care workers in hospitals can also become
infected with the fetal AIDS virus by coming in with the infected blood. They can also
get this disease by handling organs from infected donors. Making sure you have no open
wounds and wearing gloves can help the spread of the AIDS virus in hospitals. Nurses and
health-care workers can get the virus through injury with a needle or sharp instruments used in
taking care of AIDS infected patient. A few patients have become infected during oral surgery
by an HIV-infected patient. People can also get the AIDS virus from having there blood and an
HIV infected persons blood rubbed together. If an AIDS infected person gets a scrape or cut
and their blood comes in with an open wound of a person who does not have the AIDS
virus, the uninfected person will probably become infected with the fatal virus.
Although, Aids is a common disease it could be prevented by knowing the
facts and the history. If everyone would listen and wear a condem less would become infected.
Hopefully in the future a cure will be found for this horrible disease.