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Thread: HIV and AIDS in Thailand

  1. #1
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    HIV and AIDS in Thailand

    HIV and AIDS in Thailand

    Developing countries seldom has comprehensive health plan for their people, moreover for sexually transmitted diseases. However, Thailand has been advocating for more than 10 years now lessening the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, most specially HIV and AIDS.

    The first case of AIDS in Thailand was recorded in 1984. The number multiplied reaching around 143,000 new HIV infections in 1991. Because of this, a comprehensive health program was established and a massive public information campaign was started, advocating the control of the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, most specially HIV and AIDS. The action significantly reduced the number of new infections to 19,000 in 2003. The government also initiated the 100 percent condom program, specifically targeting sex workers to adhere to the program.

    Despite the efforts, there are approximately 530,000 people living with HIV by the end of 2009. This is why the advocacy against HIV and AIDS should be continued vigilantly up to this day.

    Causes

    The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) destroys CD4 cells, a specific type of white blood cell that’s plays a large role in immune system. These cells, often referred to as T cells, helps fight the body against infections, making the immune system weak as more cells are destroyed. HIV belongs to a group of viruses knows as retrovirus. A full blown HIV infection progresses to AIDS after a couple of years, depending upon many factors such as viral, host and environment. An HIV infection is necessary to develop AIDS. An HIV patient is considered to have AIDS if the CD4 cell count is below 200 cells/mm3 and is symptomatic of a list of complications from HIV infection ranging from opportunistic infection, cancer, neurologic symptoms and wasting syndrome.

    Signs and Symptoms

    The time of development of HIV infection to AIDS varies, some may even be asymptomatic for as long as 20 years from the time of infection. The average progression is usually 8 to 10 years, if antiretroviral therapy is not available

    Weeks after infection, a person may develop a variety of symptoms of primary or acute infection. These infections are typically described as influenza-like illnesses. It can range from mild fever, body aches and pains, sore throat and swollen glands. After the primary infection phase, the person may become symptom-free for a period of time. During this asymptomatic phase, the CD4 cells are continuously being destroyed by the virus. With the decline of the CD4 cells, the immune system weakens, bringing in more mild symptoms of HIV such as fungal infections, chronic raches, diarrhea, fatigue and weight loss. As more CD4 cells are being destroyed, there is a further decline in the function of the immune system, resulting to more severe complications of HIV such as serious infections, malignancies, severe weight loss and decline in mental function. However, an effective antiretroviral therapy can reverse the signs and symptoms, restoring the health of some infected people.

    Diagnosis

    A blood test is advised if an HIV infection is suspected. The test most commonly known to detect HIV infection is called Enzyme Linked Immuno-Sorbent Assay, or ELISA test.
    Once the ELISA test finds HIV antibodies, the result will be confirmed by the Western Blot test. Recently, tests can now look for HIV antibodies in the saliva, which can provide results within 20 minutes after testing. During the window period, which is the asymptomatic period after the primary infection, the ELISA test may reflect a negative result. However, if HIV infection is suspected, a test can be done to detect the presence of virus in the blood, since the ELISA test can only detect the antibodies. This test is called HIV RNA or p24. Some testing centers around Thailand give routine screening using these tests.

    Treatment

    There is still no evidence that currently available therapies can cure HIV and AIDS. However, a number of medications are recommended to boost the immune system and to manage the complications of the infection. It is important that medications should first be approved by a physician and that patients should follow the therapy properly, to avoid risks and resistance to the drugs which can limit future options for therapy. Also, the short-term and long-term risks are highly considered when choosing the right therapy for infected persons, since the options are dependent upon the manifestation of the complications.


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    Last edited by Pee Baa Jub Jub; 27th April 2012 at 15:33.
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  2. #2
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    Thumbs up Knowledge deficit is the root of having this "spread out" in Thailand

    Thailand is a very good place to spend time with and everything in Thailand is beautiful. Only to have heard is that STDs are known to be rampant in the place due to the knowledge deficit of some people there about the spread, the mode of transmission, early signs and symptoms and the need to seek medical help in the presence of early manifestation.

    There has to be an organization there that constantly educate people to be more aware of this problem.

  3. #3
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    Yes we need more education about this issue in Thailand. Starting from very high school.
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    All news Copyrighted Personal Thailand News Agency if nothing else stated.

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