Wednesday, September 30, 2009

HIV, AIDS, and ARV in Africa

Last night my husband went to the Society of Malawi meeting. On this particular night there was a Malawian expert talking about HIV, AIDS, and ARV (Anti Retro Viral) drugs used to treat AIDS.

I have never known the difference between HIV and AIDS and always thought of it as one and the same. Last night the speaker clarified the difference: HIV is when the blood CD4 (proteins that make up the immune system) drop to 500 and AIDS is when CD4 drop to 200.
When a person gets HIV his CD4 just keep going down. As the sickness progresses the patient will get ailments like shingles and thrush and will experience weight loss. After the CD4 level drops all the way to 200 more serious sicknesses like TB and some forms of meningitis will occur. After that point the patient has less than a year left to live. Right now in Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Blantyre, Malawi, most of the beds are taken up with the AIDS patients. If a patient comes in with Malaria he or she is simply given outpatient treatment and sent home.

The very first ARV drugs could add about a year to one’s life and the patient would have to take 20 to 30 tablets daily. Later on new drugs came that reduced the amount of drugs to 3 tablets per day and eventually to 1 tablet that contained 3 different types of medicines in it. There are about 22 ARV drugs in the world. In Malawi there are 4 to 5 ARV drugs that are available to patients for free. Those drugs are donated for free by different aid organizations. Also in private clinics 4 to 5 other types of drug are available for sale. Why so many? Because AIDS has different strains and they require different drugs to combat them. There are also different levels of toxicity in the drugs and they can have different side effects. Five percent of patients taking these drugs have an adverse reaction. In Western countries these kinds of medicines will not be used but Africa will gladly take anything it can get. The Malawi government decided that it would be better for 5% of infected people to get this reaction than for 100% to have no hope at all. One common side effect is skin rash that makes patients look as if they had been burned.
The new ARVs can add decades to the patient’s life if taken properly. People do not realize that if they start on ARVs they have to take the complete course of medication at the appropriate time. AIDS can build up resistance to the drug if the treatment is interrupted or administered incorrectly. In Malawi, out of 1 million infected people only 200,000 are receiving ARVs. One of the reasons is that the supply of ARVs does not come in consistently. Sometimes when the hospitals run out there are periods of 3 to 4 months when there are no drugs available.

Another important fact is that some may test negative for HIV after a period on ARVs, but this does not always mean that the patient is cured. The virus stores itself in one’s brain, liver, or lymph nodes and can return later should the patient stop taking regular treatment.

Some of the people in the Western countries think that since ARV drugs are so available, AIDS is not such a serious threat any more. But they need to realize that AIDS is still a major killer all over the world. Right now scientists are trying to find a cure that will heal people from AIDS completely and make this pandemic history!

2 comments:

  1. Hello everyone here in this forum i am so glad that i have this great opportunity to come out here and share my testimony on how Dr Molemen was able to cure me totally from Hiv disease, i have been suffering from this Disease for approximately 4 Years now, i have tried various ways to get rid of this Virus out of my body, i have also purchase for Medical treatment from my doctor but they all failed, sometime back now while i was browsing the Internet i found some good quote concerning Dr Molemen Herbal Medicine, and how he has been using it to save souls from Different Disease including Cancer, someone also said she was been cured of Hiv from his medicine, and they gave out his contact details in case anyone needs his help, i decided to contact Dr Molemen and i told him about my Hiv illness he told me not to worry that he was going to send me his herbal medicine all i was to do is to send him my personal details and also my home address so he can post the Medicine to me, actually i did all that was required by this Man, i took the medicine just as prescribe by him, he told me to go for check up in the hospital which i did and to my great surprise my Doctor told me the Hiv Virus was no longer there, i even went to other hospital for better confirmation its was still the same thing, Today i am so happy that i am Negative again, Dr Molemen has given me reasons to share tears of Joy, you can reach to Dr Molemen on his email address at ( drmolemenspiritualtemple@gmail.com / dr.molemenspiritualtemple@yahoo.com) or call him on +2347036013351

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  2. Medical scientists have discovered a new way to battle HIV AIDS by using a man called Dr itua
    MY NAME IS Greg Thomas.I SAW A COMMENT ON POSITIVE BLOGS AND I WILL LOVE TO TELL EVERY BODY HOW MY STATUS CHANGES TO NEGATIVE and i got cured,
    AND AM NOW A LIVING WITNESS OF IT AND I THINK ITS A SHAME ON ME IF I DON'T SHARE THIS LOVELY STORY WITH OTHER PEOPLE INFECTED WITH THIS DEADLY VIRUS.
    HIV HAS BEEN ONGOING IN MY FAMILY, I LOST BOTH PARENTS TO HIV. AND IT IS SO MUCH PAIN I'VE NOT BEEN ABLE TO GET OVER..
    AS WE ALL KNOW MEDICALLY THERE IS NO SOLUTION TO IT..AND MEDICATION IS VERY EXPENSIVE..SO SOMEONE INTRODUCED ME TO A HERBAL PRACTITIONER IN AFRICA..
    I HAD A JOB THERE TO EXECUTE SO I TOOK TIME TO CHECK OUT ON HIM.I SHOWED HIM ALL MY TESTS AND RESULTS..
    I WAS ALREADY DISORGANIZED WITH HIV AND IT WAS ALREADY TAKING ITS TOWL ON ME..
    I HAD SPENT THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS SO I DECIDED TO TRY HIM OUT ALTHOUGH I DID'NT BELIEVE IN IT,
    I WAS JUST TRYING IT OUT OF FRUSTRATION? AND AFTER 14 DAYS, HE TOLD ME TO GO FOR A MEDICAL TEST.
    AND YOU WON'T BELIEVE THAT 5 DIFFERENT DOCTORS CONFIRMED IT THAT AM NEGATIVE..IT WAS LIKE A DREAM,,I NEVER BELIEVE HIV HAS CURE..AM NOW NEGATIVE,,
    AM A LIVING WITNESS..I DON'T KNOW HOW TO THANK THIS MAN? I JUST WANT TO HELP OTHERS IN ANY WAY I CAN..
    I HAVE JOINED MANY FORUMS AND HAVE POSTED THIS TESTIMONIES AND ALOT OF PEOPLE HAS MAIL AND CALLED THIS MAN ON PHONE AND AFTER 14 DAYS THEY ALL CONFIRMED NEGATIVE..
    BBC NEWS TOOK IT LIVE AND EVERY EVERYBODY SAW IT AND ITS NOW OUT IN PAPERS AND MAGAZINES THAT THERE IS A HERBAL CURE FOR HIV AND ALL WITH THE HELP OF THIS MAN,,
    IF YOU WISH TAKE IT OR NOT..GOD KNOWS I HAVE TRIED MY BEST. ABOUT 28 PEOPLE HAVE BEEN CONFIRMED NEGATIVE THROUGH THE HERBAL CURE OF DR ITUA
    AND THEY SEND MAILS TO THANKS ME AFTER THEY HAVE BEEN CONFIRMED NEGATIVE,,THIS MAN IS REAL..DON'T MISS THIS CHANCE,,HIV IS A DEADLY VIRUS,,GET RID OF IT NOW..
    If there is anyone who has similar problem and still looking for a way out, his email still remains drituaherbalcenter@gmail.com or call or whatsapp him on +2348149277967
    DOCTOR ITUA CAN AS WELL CURE THE FOLLOWING DISEASE:-
    1. HIV/AIDS
    2. HERPES
    3. CANCER
    4. ALS
    5. Hepatitis B
    6. Diabetes

    Thanks Moderators

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