Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS): Symptoms, Treatment and Prevention
AIDS (Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome) is a chronic life-threatening disease. Actually, it is a special type of serious infectious disease of the human immune system. It is defined as the HIV post infection condition. Total immunity of the body is damaged by the infection of the HIV. So a patient died easily by any kind of infectious disease.
In 1983, French Scientist Luc Antoine Montagnier and American Scientist Robert Charles Gallo separately described the virus of the AIDS. Montaguier gave the name of this virus as Lymphadenopathy-associated virus (LAV). But Gallo proposed the name for this virus as Human T. cell Lymphotropic virus, stain III (HTLV-III).
Later in 1896, International Committee of Nomenclature of Virus finalized the name as Human Immunodeficiency Virus or HIV. This is a retrovirus which destroys the T-helper cells (lymphucytes) which are essential component of body immune system.
During the late nineteenth or early twentieth century, HIV originated in west-central Africa.
At the end of 2019, thirty-eight million of people were living with HIV. Among them, the majority are the people of sub-Shararan Africa. About 700000 people died from AIDS and 17,0000 people became recently infected by HIV in 2019. At present, AIDs is a pandemic and it is vigorously spreading.
Transmission of AIDS
The HIV virus is not spread by:
The virus is transmitted person to person in any of the following ways:
High risk of HIV includes:
Symptoms of AIDS
In many cases, some people do not show any symptoms if they first get infected with HIV. This asymptomatic phase often lasts for years. HIV infected people should take treatment otherwise they will develop AIDS.
They are susceptible to infections that do not normally develop in people with a healthy immune system. These infections are called opportunistic infections. If the person is infected with AIDS, immune system will be damaged by the HIV.
The following symptoms gradually expressed in infected person:
Complications of AIDS
Diagnosis of AIDS
HIV infection is commonly diagnosed by blood tests. There are three main types of tests that are commonly used:
Person with AIDS usually have regular blood tests to check their CD4 (T-helper cell) cell count. A CD4 cell count that is lower than normal may be a sign that the virus is damaging the immune system.
Treatment of AIDS
At this time, there is no treatment for AIDS. But treatments are available to manage symptoms. Treatment can also improve the quality and length of the life for those who have already developed symptoms. Now a days, two groups of medicines are used for treating AIDS.
The first group is Nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors which delay the infection of HIV and the second group is Protease inhibitors which resists the replication of HIV. A combination of these antiretroviral drugs also known as highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), is very effective in reducing the amount of HIV in the bloodstream.
At present, effective vaccine is not discovered against HIV. To prevent AIDS you should take the following some strategies: