NURS-6521N-42 Week 8 Discussion: Infections Lavoris Brown’s Main Post HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) Since HIV’s initial recognition in the U.S.A. nearly 40 years ago, it has become a chronic medical condition. HIV is the virus responsible for causing acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) in individuals and is defined by the CDC as a CD4 T-cell count <200/mm3. There are two types of HIV: 1) HIV-1 and 2) HIV-2. HIV-1; however, both cause AIDS. HIV-1 extends globally; but HIV-2 is found mostly in West Africa. HIV-2 has lower transmissibility characteristically which lends for lower AIDS transmission. Retroviral pathogenesis remains to be not completely understood due to the underlying mechanistic differences between these two infections. Progression to AIDS appears to be less in individuals with HIV-2 than those with HIV-1, but when individuals with HIV-2 do progressive into full blown AIDS, they do so with higher CD4 levels, but consistently have lower viral loads and average immune activation levels. There are significant differences between the two types of HIVs in all immune system components. HIV is transmitted by four types of contact: 1) sex with an infected person; 2) contact with blood of an infected person; 3) breast-feeding; and 4) perinatal transmission. The key to avoiding transmission of the disease is prevention (Arcangelo, Peterson, Wilbur, & Reinhold, 2017; Nyamweya, Hegedus, Jaye, Rowland-Jones, Flanagan, & Macallan, 2013). Does Increased Complacency with Available Medication Options Lead to Increased HIV Cases? Individuals with HIV can lead near-normal lives thanks to the emergence of combined antiretroviral therapy (cART), and this cART is responsible for a decrease in both morbidity and mortality for those with HIV (Scourfield, Waters, & Nelson, 2011). The opinion of this author is that sexually promiscuous individuals might engage in unprotected sexual relations with HIV- infected persons because they feel that there are medications that can prevent the spread of HIV, just as there is a “morning after pill” for individuals that have unprotected sex and wish to prevent unwanted or unplanned pregnancies.
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- Summer '15