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Aids and How It Spread Globally - Essay Example

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Aids and How It Spread Globally

The disease is primarily caused by the HIV virus i.e. the Human Immunodeficiency Virus. It was in the year 1982 that the term was first used; while earlier indication of such type of disease was termed as 'Grid' i.e. Gay related immune deficiency (BBC, 2006). The disease started from the African region. In the year 1981 the medical fraternity started noticing that a number of patients in the African region are dying from a disease, which they believed must not have been serious enough (CBC News, 2006). The seriousness of the fatal infection became more striking when the disease soon found its way into other countries and first case of AIDS death was reported in Canada in the year 1982. The western world took notice and researches into the symptoms and nature of the infection led to its categorization as Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome.
The virus HIV, leads to gradual weakening of the immune system of the body and in such situations even everyday infections start becoming life threatening. Research and development into finding a permanent solution to cure the disease have not yet been successful. Though, the life expectancy of AIDS patients have become much more now. While earlier, the patient would have died within months of the disease, now an AIDS patient can expect to lead a normal life for 12-15 years after getting infected with the HIV.

The HIV
Our immune system which is supposed to work like a defense mechanism against the infections is badly damaged when the Human Immunodeficiency Virus target the immune system. This virus attacks a particular type of white blood cells called CD4+ cells. After taking full control of the cell the virus then inserts its own genes into the cell's DNA2. Subsequently, the virus starts using the DNA cell to manufacture more virus particles. The CD4+ host cells gradually starts dying and as the number of CD4+ cells become less in the human body, the immune system of the body starts weakening. The HIV is a retrovirus containing two single-strand liner RNA molecules per virion and reverse transcriptase. The structure of this virus is said to be simple than many other viruses, but it has proved to be very difficult to defeat. After infecting the body, the virus goes into human blood, sexual fluids and breast milk. Therefore, the virus is passed on to another person, if his or her fluids come in contact with any of the infected fluids.

How the Disease Spreads
As the HIV virus infects the blood, sexual fluids and breast milk, the disease can spread to another healthy person when;
i. A healthy person starts having sexual intercourse with the infected person. In order to save the infection being passed onto to another person as a result of sexual intercourse, condoms are the best defense mechanism. Adopting such protective mechanism doesn't allow the sexual fluids to come in contact with each other. The UNAIDS report (2008) indicates that the educative and informative programs are indeed having a good impact on the youth of 15-24 years and there are reductions in risky behavior3.
ii. A healthy person shares the injection needles and body piercing equipment with another infected person. In such cases, doctors advise that injection needles should be properly sterilized before being passed on to another person. Often drug addicts do not take such care and they make ...Show more

Summary

AIDS i.e. Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome has proved to be a deadly disease for the human civilization. Despite best efforts by the researchers, no credible treatment has been found for this disease during the last more than 25 years. As per the World Health Organization and UNAIDS statistics the number of people living with AIDS in 2007 is estimated at around 33 million1…
Author : dallinmueller
Aids and How It Spread Globally essay example
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