Over the last fifteen years a new disease spread by a family of viruses, HIV, has spread globally. HIV stands for Human lmmuno-deficiency Virus. Due to Sharing of SyringesHIV has been given this name because its long-term effect is to attack the immune system of the body, making it weak and deficient. We live virtually in a sea of microorganisms and at every moment an enormous number of them are entering our body. It is the immune system that normally fights off these microorganisms and keeps us healthy. Any compromise with the working of the immune system has profound effect on our body.

After about 5 to 10 years of contracting the HIV infection, the virus has weakened the immune system of the patients so much that they develop a number of different illnesses such as tuberculosis, pneumonia, persistent diarrhea, fever and skin infections. This condition is called AIDS Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome.

Signs and Symptoms of HIV/AIDS

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says the following signs and symptoms may be warning signs of late-stage HIV infection:

rapid weight loss

dry cough

recurring fever or profuse night sweats

profound and unexplained fatigue

swollen lymph glands in the armpits, groin, or neck

diarrhea lasting more than a week

white spots or unusual blemishes on the tongue, in the mouth, or in the throat


red, brown, pink, or purplish blotches on or under the skin or inside the mouth, nose, or eyelids

memory loss, depression, and other neurological disorders

Causes of Aids:

The cause of AIDS (Autoimmune Deficiency Syndrome) is the Human Immunodeficiency Virus, HIV. HIV is most frequently spread through contact with an infected individual's body fluids. These fluids include semen, vaginal secretions, rectal secretions, or blood. It is not transmissable through tears, sweat, or saliva. HIV can be contracted from a bad blood transfusion, but this is vanishingly rare (1 per every 2 million transfusions in the USA).

The core effect of the HIV virus is to annihilate a group of the body's immune cellsknown as the CD4+ T-Helper Cells. These cells are a key component in your body's immune response to bacterial infections. Initial infection with HIV usually occurs when the virus enters a different class of immune cells, known as macrophages. The virus then spreads from the macrophage population to the CD4+ T-Helper cell population.

The effect of the virus on macrophages is minimal, but the effect on CD4+ T-Helper cells is devastating. A single infected T-Helper cell can traverse the body many times per hour through the bloodstream, binding to other CD4+ T-Helper cells and inducing them to self-destruct, a process known as apoptosis. As this population of cells wanes, your body becomes less able to fight off bacterial infections - this is the time period that physicians call "AIDS." So - first you get HIV, then years later as your body loses its immune cells, it transforms into AIDS.

AIDS Treatment:

At this time, there is no cure for AIDS, but medications are effective in fighting HIV and its complications. Treatments are designed to reduce HIV in your body, keep your immune system as healthy as possible and decrease the complications you may develop.

You and your doctor will work together to develop a treatment plan that best meets your needs. Three main factors will be considered when designing your treatment plan:

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Your willingness and readiness to begin therapy

The stage of your disease

Other health problems

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a number of drugs for treating HIV and AIDS. It's important that you take your medications exactly as prescribed. This is a crucial part of your treatment success. Our program offers pharmacy services to help you maintain your drug regimen and to answer any questions you may have.

Most medications have side effects, which your doctor will discuss with you. Individuals respond differently to medications and side effects may vary. Our doctors, nurses and pharmacists can help you manage these side effects.

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