Aids Essay, Research Paper
AIDS is caused by the HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus). AIDS is the final and most serious stage of HIV. It is characterized by signs and symptoms of severe immune deficiency. AIDS stands for acquired immune deficiency syndrome. This virus attacks the immune system and leaves the body vulnerable to a variety of life-threatening
illnesses. These illnesses are often caused by common bacteria, yeast, and viruses thatordinarily do not cause disease.
HIV has been found in blood, semen, saliva, tears, nervous system tissue, breast milk, and female genital tract secretions; however, only blood, semen, female genital tract secretions, and breast milk have been proven to transmit the infection to others.
Transmission of the virus occurs through sexual contact including oral, vaginal, and anal sex; via blood through transfusions or needle sharing; and from a pregnant women to the fetus or a nursing mother to her baby. Other transmission methods are rare and include
accidental needle injury, artificial insemination through donated semen, and kidney transplantation through the donated kidney.
At the present time, there is no cure for AIDS. It has proved to be a universally fatal illness. Few patients survive 5 years following diagnosis. The average time from diagnosis of AIDS to death is 18 to 24 months although this is increasing with improvements in
treatment techniques. Research continues in drug treatments for AIDS and vaccine development.
AIDS defining manifestations of immune deficiency, also called the opportunistic infections of AIDS, are illnesses that AIDS patients frequently acquire. Sometimes there will be more than one infection at the same time. Many of these infections are difficult to
treat in AIDS patients, and therapy is required indefinitely or the infection will relapse.
If you have any of the risk factors for AIDS, you should call for an appointment with your health care provider; or if symptoms of AIDS are present. By law, AIDS testing and results are kept confidential. Results of your testing will be reviewed with you by your health care provider.