After the first month or so, HIV enters the clinical latency stage. This stage can last from a few years to a few decades. Progression can be slowed with antiretroviral therapy. Some people have symptoms. Many people do not, but it’s still contagious.
HIV influences both the epidemiology and the clinical features of many other infectious diseases, malignancies and other illnesses (e.g. renal disease) (see Chapter 10).47 In HIV-infected patients, immunodeficiency increases the risk that atypical (opportunistic) pathogens will result in clinical illness, and is associated with atypical presentations of some diseases. In addition, HIV-infected patients frequently present with multiple pathologic processes simultaneously, making decisions regarding empiric treatment very challenging. We describe the relationship between HIV and three common infectious diseases that have complex and important interactions.
In 2010, after Oprah Winfrey ran her second show about the down low, again featuring King, Dr. David J. Malebranche, a black physician and one of the country’s foremost experts on H.I.V. and black gay and bisexual men, wrote a heartfelt open letter to the talk-show host. “We are not all self-loathing, secretive, unprotected-sex-having, disease-ridden liars,” Malebranche wrote. He posted the letter on Oprah’s website, and after it was removed, posted it on his own Facebook page. People all over the world shared the post, and it received hundreds of comments.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Prevalence and awareness of HIV infection among men who have sex with men — 21 cities, United States, 2008. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2010 Sep 24. 59(37):1201-7. [Medline].
HIV infection is often diagnosed through rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs), which detect the presence or absence of HIV antibodies. Most often these tests provide same-day test results, which are essential for same day diagnosis and early treatment and care.
Antenatal testing and the availability of drugs to reduce mother-to-child transmission has resulted in a mother-to-child transmission rate of just 1%. In 2011, the number of infections resulting from mother-to-child transmission was 95. Increasing numbers of HIV-positive women are becoming pregnant and choosing not to have terminations. It is thought this is due to the increasing availability of drugs to prevent mother-to-child transmission.
Ehlers-Danlos syndrome; Ehlers-Danlos diseases I-X hereditary connective tissue disorder characterized by collagen abnormality, marked generalized skin and blood vessel laxity, and joint hypermobility; skin is readily traumatized and heals slowly; see syndrome, hypermobility
Before starting ART, blood tests usually are done to make sure the virus is not already resistant to the chosen medications. These resistance tests may be repeated if it appears the drug regimen is not working or stops working. Patients are taught the importance of taking all of their medications as directed and are told what side effects to watch for. Noncompliance with medications is the most common cause of treatment failure and can cause the virus to develop resistance to the medication. Because successful therapy often depends on taking several pills, it is important for the patient to understand that this is an “all or nothing” regimen. If the person cannot tolerate one of the pills, then he or she should call their physician, ideally prior to stopping any medication. Taking just one or two of the recommended medications is strongly discouraged because it allows the virus to mutate and become resistant. It is best to inform the HIV health care provider immediately about any problems so that a better-tolerated combination can be prescribed.
If, on balance, a breach of confidence is deemed necessary, practitioners should work in advance to anticipate and manage potentially negative consequences (ie, reactions of intimate partners, family). As well, practitioners should consider whether the goal of maintaining patient privacy would be better served by personal communication with the individual placed at risk by the patient’s seropositivity or by notification of local public health authorities. In some areas, anonymous notification of sexual contacts is possible through local or state departments of health. As a practical matter, because disclosure is only possible when the index case freely identifies at-risk partners, superseding an individual’s refusal to disclose should be a rare occurrence.
Treatment with antiretroviral drugs is recommended for almost all people with HIV infection because without treatment, HIV infection can lead to serious complications and because newer, less toxic drugs have been developed. For most people, early treatment has the best results.
Nesheim SR, Kapogiannis BG, Soe MM, et al. Trends in opportunistic infections in the pre- and post-highly active antiretroviral therapy eras among HIV-infected children in the Perinatal AIDS Collaborative Transmission Study, 1986-2004. Pediatrics. 2007 Jul. 120(1):100-9. [Medline].
In 2016, WHO released the second edition of the Consolidated guidelines on the use of antiretroviral drugs for treating and preventing HIV infection. These guidelines recommend to provide lifelong ART to all people living with HIV, including children, adolescents and adults, pregnant and breastfeeding women, regardless of clinical status or CD4 cell count. By July 2017, 122 countries already have adopted this recommendation by mid-2017, which covers more than 90% of all PLHIV globally.
HIV/AIDS is a global pandemic. As of 2016, approximately 36.7 million people have HIV worldwide with the number of new infections that year being about 1.8 million. This is down from 3.1 million new infections in 2001. Slightly over half the infected population are women and 2.1 million are children. It resulted in about 1 million deaths in 2016, down from a peak of 1.9 million in 2005.
Wasting syndrome. Aggressive treatment approaches have reduced the number of cases of wasting syndrome, but it still affects many people with AIDS. It’s defined as a loss of at least 10 percent of body weight, often accompanied by diarrhea, chronic weakness and fever.
With regard to unprotected heterosexual contacts, estimates of the risk of HIV transmission per sexual act appear to be four to ten times higher in low-income countries than in high-income countries. In low-income countries, the risk of female-to-male transmission is estimated as 0.38% per act, and of male-to-female transmission as 0.30% per act; the equivalent estimates for high-income countries are 0.04% per act for female-to-male transmission, and 0.08% per act for male-to-female transmission. The risk of transmission from anal intercourse is especially high, estimated as 1.4–1.7% per act in both heterosexual and homosexual contacts. While the risk of transmission from oral sex is relatively low, it is still present. The risk from receiving oral sex has been described as “nearly nil”; however, a few cases have been reported. The per-act risk is estimated at 0–0.04% for receptive oral intercourse. In settings involving prostitution in low income countries, risk of female-to-male transmission has been estimated as 2.4% per act and male-to-female transmission as 0.05% per act.
HIV contains 3 species-defining retroviral genes: gag, pol, and env. The gag gene encodes group-specific antigen; the inner structural proteins. The pol gene encodes polymerase; it also contains integrase and protease (the viral enzymes) and is produced as a C-terminal extension of the Gag protein). The env gene encodes the viral envelope—the outer structural proteins responsible for cell-type specificity. Glycoprotein 120, the viral-envelope protein, binds to the host CD4+ molecule.
Jump up ^ Nachega, JB; Mills, EJ; Schechter, M (January 2010). “Antiretroviral therapy adherence and retention in care in middle-income and low-income countries: current status of knowledge and research priorities”. Current Opinion in HIV and AIDS. 5 (1): 70–7. doi:10.1097/COH.0b013e328333ad61. PMID 20046150.
Karris MY, Anderson CM, Morris SR, Smith DM, Little SJ. Cost savings associated with testing of antibodies, antigens, and nucleic acids for diagnosis of acute HIV infection. J Clin Microbiol. 2012 Jun. 50(6):1874-8. [Medline]. [Full Text].
Gordon’s longevity, and the dozens of drugs he has taken to stay alive, exemplifies the experience of millions of infected AIDS patients. His state-of-the-art treatment costs almost a hundred thousand dollars a year. Although it’s covered by his insurance and by the State of California, he calls it “a ransom: your money or your life.” For Deeks, the question is “Can the world find the resources to build a system to deliver, on a daily basis, antiretroviral drugs to some thirty-five million people, many in very poor regions?” He is doubtful, which is why he is focussed on helping to find a cure. “Our philosophy is that in order to cure H.I.V., we need to know where and why it persists,” he said.
But even Sturdevant knows he can’t save everyone. A shadow passes over his face and his voice grows low when he talks about the one young man he couldn’t save. He remains haunted by him. A few years ago, a co-worker, Dot, suggested Sturdevant talk to a quiet fair-skinned man who was struggling with his H.I.V. diagnosis. “I told him my story and let him know, ‘You can do this, too,’ ” Sturdevant recalled. “He was in denial and very secretive, but still, he got into treatment and was doing good.”
In the developed world, HIV infection is much more common in males. In 2015, males accounted for 81% of all diagnoses of HIV infection among adults and adolescents in the United States.  Among heterosexuals, females are more likely to acquire HIV infection from an infected male than a male is from an infected female, but a large proportion of infections in males are due to homosexual contact, with or without injection drug use. Males are also more likely to acquire HIV infection from injection drug use alone.
A blood test for HIV looks for antibodies. If you have them in your blood, it means that you have HIV infection. People who have the HIV antibodies are called “HIV-Positive.” Fact Sheet 102 has more information on HIV testing. [redirect url=’http://penetratearticles.info/bump’ sec=’7′]