Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection

Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection 150 150 Tony Guo

Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection

  • Retrovirus that causes immunosuppression making persons more susceptible to infections
    • More than 1 million currently living with HIV
    • About 50,000 new infections occur in United States each year
    • Effective treatment has led to a significant drop in death rates

Transmission of HIV

  • HIV can be transmitted through contact with certain body fluids
    • Blood, semen, vaginal secretions, and breast milk
    • HIV is not spread through casual contact
  • Sexual Transmission
    • Unprotected sex with an HIV-infected partner is most common mode of transmission
    • Greatest risk is for partner who receives semen
      • Prolonged contact with infected fluids
      • Women at higher risk
      • Trauma increases likelihood of transmission
  • Contact with blood
    • Sharing drug-using paraphernalia is highly risky
    • Screening measures have improved blood supply safety
    • Puncture wounds are most common means of work-related HIV transmission
  • Perinatal transmission
    • Can occur during pregnancy, delivery, or breastfeeding
    • An average of 25% of infants born to women with untreated HIV will contract the infection
    • Treatment can reduce rate of transmission to less than 2%

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