General information about the disease
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) - a disease that is considered to be one of the most terrible and dangerous evils of modern civilization. The increased attention given to AIDS, due to the fact that for many years scientists can not find a cure for the uncontrolled destruction of the immune system. As a result, the fight against AIDS is conducted mainly through disease prevention and dissemination of information about it among the inhabitants of the Earth.
AIDS is among the diseases which they say that they kill slowly but surely. Pathogen infection alters the structure of the DNA of healthy cells and can persist in the body of the support over 3 years. Throughout this period he does not lose its activity and is becoming an indispensable element in the blood. With this feature of the virus, researchers attributed the extremely high risk of contracting AIDS when using poorly sterilized instruments that previously entered into direct contact with the blood of an infected person. The situation is complicated by the fact that AIDS, the symptoms of which may occur even several years after infection, characterized by a high degree of variability. For this indicator, the disease ahead of all known viruses, including numerous varieties of influenza.
How do you get AIDS?
Many people believe that AIDS is deadly for any normal person. In fact, this is absolute nonsense. "Catch" the disease can only be in three ways:
- during sexual intercourse with an infected person;
- in the womb, when AIDS is transmitted directly to the fetus through the placenta;
- infected blood or its ingested in any other way, for example using poorly treated surgical instruments.
Knowing how the virus is transmitted, have not questioned the fact that the largest number of AIDS cases registered among drug users who often use one syringe for intravenous injection. At risk are and homosexuals because of their environments condoms are not used as often as during sexual intercourse between men and women. To cope with such problems can only comprehensive AIDS prevention aimed at early detection of infected. With regard to blood transfusion, in recent years, this problem is not as prevalent as today, every blood donor is thoroughly screened for the AIDS virus. The same applies to the control of the use of surgical instruments, which every year becomes more and more rigid.
There are some exotic ways of AIDS transmission, but their share in the overall incidence is negligible, and therefore we will not consider such triggers in one article. Just to mention that you should treat with extreme caution in sexual intercourse without using a condom during the month.
What happens when immunodeficiency virus enters the bloodstream?
After entry into the body of the virus DNA is contacted with a host cell DNA. With the help of the enzyme integrase, it is embedded in its structure violates the normal operation of healthy organs and tissues. The symptoms of AIDS are manifested not immediately, but the correct diagnosis is possible even in the early stages, because from the beginning the blood cells containing specific genetic material, that is, in fact, they mutate under the influence of the pathogen.
Submitting to the wrong genetic program, the cells begin to reproduce the various components of the virus, contributing to its spread. Separate role in this process is given protease enzymes which can alter viral envelope new element so that it becomes suitable for the transmission to healthy cells. At the stage of reproduction can be conducted fairly effective fight against AIDS, calling for the use of protease inhibitors, which deprive the enzyme to its ability to reproduce.
The question arises - if scientists know so much about the mechanism of the development of AIDS, why every year on our planet, new AIDS? The whole point here is that the agent affects not only the T-lifotsity, but also some other cells with long life (macrophages, monocytes). In them, he is inactive and invulnerable to the activities of known drugs, that is, fully bring AIDS out of the body is not possible.
Symptoms of AIDS
The studies that were conducted in different years in dozens of Western countries have shown that since the infection to the first symptoms of AIDS itself may take more than one year. However, the rate of progression of the disease depends on a variety of factors: the virus strain, the genetic characteristics of the patient, his psychological state, standard of living and other causes. In general, we can accurately identify 5 stages of AIDS symptoms are:
- a sharp deterioration in health - manifests itself in two to three months after infection. Patients fever, headaches, increased lymph nodes, there is a rash on the body. This stage usually lasts about 3 weeks;
- between carriers of the virus - it proceeds practically asymptomatic and often lasts up to 10 years. The symptoms of AIDS are manifested only mild symptoms, such as enlarged lymph nodes;
- Stage generalized lymphadenopathy - characterized by a strong increase in the lymph nodes, but does not last long - about three months;
- period of AIDS - related complex - symptoms are quite bright. AIDS patients suffer from sharp weight loss, ongoing diarrhea, fever, severe cough, a variety of skin disorders;
- the final formation of the AIDS - signs of infection occur constantly and rapidly progress, leading eventually to death.
As you know, the man managed to take control of a variety of diseases, but in the case of the AIDS virus conventional therapies and vaccines fail. On the causes of the failures we have written above. We add only that all existing developments in this area have a very high cost and can prevent AIDS in the early stages, and even then not in all cases. This means that now the fight against AIDS is carried out only by means of dissemination of accurate information among patients and moral support to people affected by the infection.
As the disease is considered incurable, AIDS prevention has a special role. Their goal - to prevent cases of mass infection and at least partially control the spread of the disease among the population. In developed countries, promotion of information gives good results, but in developing countries it is not working because of the ignorance of the people and the elementary rejection of a healthy lifestyle.
When AIDS prevention, and the importance placed on measures to prevent infection of infants from the sick mother. In this regard, scientists have been able to make significant progress. It was developed several drugs that reduce the risk of fetal infection and AIDS by 15-20%, and their effectiveness is growing. Particularly pleased with the fact that this therapy is quite inexpensive and accessible even to poor people.
Despite all efforts, the fight against AIDS is far from over. Yes, researchers are working on getting the vaccine and fighting the spread of diseases among newborns, however, progress in these areas do not provide an answer to the main question - how to finally defeat AIDS? It is possible that in the future mankind will be able to cope with the virus, but for now, that every year more than 70 000 children become orphans because their parents die from this terrible disease.