What is the difference between HIV and AIDS Not many people know about these illnesses and are uneducated about how to prevent this contagious virus from spreading. Well in this paper, I will inform you of what the HIV virus and AIDS really is and how they are different from each other. I will also go over how the immunity system is affected, the treatments necessary for HIV and AIDS patients and the precautions that are necessary to avoid the HIV virus and AIDS. HIV, which stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus, is a virus that only humans can get. HIV affects the immunity system, which fights off infections, bacteria and disease, therefore; becoming ill, may be more common with people that have the HIV virus as well as fighting off illnesses and getting well.
A patient with a healthy immune system will most likely have fewer complications with the HIV virus rather than someone with a weak immunity system. There is no medications to get rid of the HIV virus; therefore, anyone that is diagnosed with the HIV virus will live with the virus for the rest of their life (McGowan, 2007). HIV can be transmitted in three ways. Sexual intercourse, the direct contact with someone??™s blood that has the HIV virus and can also be transmitted from an infected mother to her unborn child (Guy Slowik, 2009). The most common way that HIV is transmitted is by sexual contact with an infected partner (Guy Slowik, 2009). The virus enters the body through the lining of the vagina, penis, rectum or mouth during sexual relations. The second most common way to transmit the HIV virus is by direct contact with infected blood. Actions that result with this transmission is by injecting drugs using a shared needle or syringe that is contaminated with the infected blood, health care workers coming into direct contact with the infected blood during procedures and also through blood transfusions (Guy Slowik, 2009).
Accidental needle sticks when inserting IVs and giving shots as well into an infected person could transmit the virus. The HIV virus can be transmitted is very rare yet it is possible. During blood transfusions, HIV can be transmitted through the pints of blood that a patient receives. This transmit is very rare now days because blood screening and heat treatments, the risk of getting an HIV during a transfusion is less likely to happen. The third way to transmit the HIV virus to another individual is from the infected mother to her unborn child during pregnancy.
Approximately one-quarter to one-third of all untreated pregnant women infected with the HIV virus will pass the infection to their babies (Guy Slowik, 2009). The risk of transmission increases with longer delivery times, therefore; the risk can be reduced by delivering the baby by cesarean section also known as C-Section (Guy Slowik, 2009). C-Section is a surgical procedure where the unborn child is delivered through an incision in the mother??™s abdominal wall and uterus.
There is no vaccine available for the HIV virus, therefore; the only way to prevent infection of the HIV virus is practice safe sex by using condoms, not to share needles and syringes and to be extremely careful when you may become into contact with someone else??™s blood such as health care workers. If you play the game, you pay the consequences. Be safe and think before you act. Know who you have sexual relations with and prevent the spread of the HIV virus. Once diagnosed with HIV, one may not ever suffer any complications with the virus in their system.
However, the virus still can be passed along to the infected person??™s sexual partners. It is recommended that people with the HIV virus use protection when having any sexual contact with someone and that they are made aware that they have the HIV virus. Condoms should be used to protect against the virus. Also talking to you health care professional about the prevention as well can also give people good advice on how to prevent the virus from being spread to love ones as well. Now that we know about the HIV virus, let??™s discuss AIDS. AIDS stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome.
The AIDS virus infects the key cells CD4-postitive T (CD4+T cells) cells which fights off infections and diseases. When the HIV virus invades the body??™s CD4+ T cells the already damaged immune system loses its ability to defend against diseases caused by bacteria, viruses and other microscopic organisms (McGowan, 2007). AIDS is an advanced stage of the HIV virus yet not all people infected with HIV virus develop AIDS. According to experts, they estimate that about half the people with the HIV virus will develop AIDS within 10 years after becoming infected with the virus. (Guy Slowik, 2009). Of course these results depend also on the factors of the person??™s health status and health-related behaviors.
The differences between the HIV virus and AIDS are that they are similar yet they are different. They act differently to the immune system. HIV virus starts first and then after advancing it may become into AIDS. Not everyone with HIV develops AIDS. There are many different clinics throughout the country that will do testing for HIV virus and AIDS sometimes at little or no cost. People are unaware that they have the virus and go untested.
I encourage everyone to behave like responsible adults and get tested if they even think that they may have HIV or AIDS. The unknown is the most things that cause this contagious virus to spread from person to person. BibliographyAIDS.gov. (n.d.
). Retrieved May 29, 2010, from What is HIV/AIDS: http://aids.gov/hiv-aids-basics/hiv-aids-101/overview/what-is-hiv-aids/Guy Slowik, F.
(2009, September). ehealth MD. Retrieved May 29, 2010, from AIDS and HIV: http://www.ehealthmd.
com/library/aids/ads_spread.htmlMcGowan, A. (2007, January 16). Associated Content.
Retrieved May 29, 2010, from The Difference Between HIV and AIDS: http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/119066/the_difference_between_hiv_and_aids.htmlcat=41