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home > sexual information > STI > aids
Aids is caused by a virus known since 1980 as HIV. This virus had of course already existed much longer. It is suspected that it was transmitted by apes. The HIV virus effects, they immunity system so that all types of other infections and diseases can occur put up. It is of such ailments that a patient dies.
How is AIDS transmitted?
AIDS can be transmitted by intimate sexual contact, when sperm or blood enters the bloodstream of someone else. But AIDS can also be transmitted by blood transfusion. So also from mother to foetus or through injections with unclean needles. The HIV virus only survives in certain liquids like blood or sprang. Then when it can occur in the vagina, and in menstruation blood.
Outside the body, the HIV virus is soon dead. One cannot therefore get AIDS from kissing, shaking hands, eating off the same plate, coughing or spitting, through tears or sweat or from bites by insects or other animals.
Fear of AIDS as it reached epidemic proportions, and in such cases patients suffer as much from social ostracism as from the infection itself.
Symptoms of AIDS
An infection with the HIV-virus need not result in illness. About half the people who carry the virus (are HIV-positive) never show any effects. Others suffer from various ailments, like fatigue, night sweat, fever, diarrhoea, swollen glands, coughing and skin cancer and finally succumb through general deterioration of all the vital functions.
Treatment of AIDS
Better and better medication is developed to slow down this process of slow and painful dying, but AIDS so far remains incurable. In poorer countries, medicines are not sufficiently available. AIDS is also a killer disease there because health services for in the many are generally inadequate, while safe sex is practised too little. It is estimated that about 25 million people (of both sexes) in the world are infected with the HIV virus. In the modern Western world, AIDS is relatively rare, like syphilis.
The AIDS test
If you want to be tested for AIDS, you must wait three months after the supposed time of infection. There are usually no outward symptoms at this time. And a drop of blood is taken and tested under the microscope. Normally the result comes in after a week or so. There are HIV-checkpoints in some big cities, where you are given the test-result immediately.
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