CHAPTER ONE- Introduction
HIV and AIDS is a major health problem in developing countries. An estimated million people living with HIV or AIDS worldwide and more than 3 million die every year from AIDS-related illnesses. At of the end of 2007, WHO/UNAIDS estimated that 70,256 people out of the total population of 25.2 million people were living with HIV, indicating a prevalence of about 0.55 % in the adult population in Nepal, though only 10,546 cases have been reported. Out of 28 % of total youth population in Nepal, .87% of all people living with HIV are aged 15-29 years, with a high rate of new infections. HIV stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus. HIV is the virus that causes AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome). HIV attacks the immune system's soldiers - the CD4 cells. When the immune system loses too many CD4 cells, you are less able to fight off infection and can develop serious opportunistic infections (OIs). A person is diagnosed with AIDS when he or she has less than 200 CD4 cells and/or one of 21 AIDS-defining OIs. * Common myth: "HIV doesn't cause AIDS."
* Truth: If you don't have HIV, you can't get AIDS. If you have AIDS, you have HIV. There is 20 years of solid scientific proof on this. AIDS is not caused by party drugs, AZT, government conspiracies, or anything else but a virus. Types of HIV
Two types of HIV are identified: HIV-1 and HIV-2, both genetically similar but different in clinical manifestations. HIV-2 is less pathogenic than HIV-1. HIV-2 is less prevalent than HIV-1 except in the African countries. Clinical manifestation of HIV-2 is late and infectivity per sexual contact is low than HIV-1. AIDS is the acquired immuno-deficiency syndrome is a fatal illness caused by a retrovirus known as Human Immuno-Deficiency Virus (HIV) which breaks down the human immune system. AIDS is also sometime called “slim disease”.
A – Acquired - not born with
I – Immune - body defense system
- not working properly
S- Syndrome - a group of signs and symptoms. AIDS is a progressive impairment of the body’s immune system leading to increase the susceptibility to infection and tumors and the fatal conditions. HIV infection is not AIDS. AIDS occurs when HIV has significantly harmed the immune system. CD4 T cell count less than 200Cells/ml leads to opportunistic infections, weight loss, fever, some diseases mainly tuberculosis caused by Mycobacterium tuberculi. Transmission
HIV is only spread through the following body fluids:
* Vaginal fluids
The most common ways HIV is passed from one person to another are: * Reusing and sharing needles
* Unprotected sex
* During pregnancy, during birth, or through breastfeeding
Causes of HIV in Nepal
Factors like poverty, low levels of education, denial, gender inequality, stigma, and discrimination have intensified Nepal’s vulnerability to HIV and AIDS. The ongoing conflict due to Maoist insurgency, political instability and the lack of education and awareness about HIV and AIDS are all factors that have fuelled the spread of the HIV and AIDS epidemic in Nepal. The lack of existing economic opportunities and the risk of being forced to enlisted into Maoist army has caused mass migration into Indian border towns and internal migration into urban cities. Due to the lack of awareness and separation from the family for an extended period, the migratory population is at great risk of being infected with HIV and AIDS by being involved in different risk behavior. Recent data suggests a generalized epidemic among the large numbers migratory workers that cross the border with India and a high prevalence rate of HIV infection in the wife's of infected migratory workers. Recent behavioral data indicate the increasing vulnerability of young people to HIV/AIDS due to the generational and cultural gap...
References: * Park. K (2007), Preventive and social Medicine 19th edition. AIDS (page no. 285).
Please join StudyMode to read the full document