How many people with HIV live in the modern world, who quickly discovered it, use modern medicine and follow all the recommendations? What do they die from?

How many people with HIV live in the modern world, who quickly discovered it, use modern medicine and follow all the recommendations? What do they die from?

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answers (3)

Answer 1
July, 2021

I study in Aktobe, Kazakhstan. We border on the Orenburg-burning zone for HIV in the Russian Federation. 391 people are infected, 3 children. The first child was infected by the mother with breastfeeding, as the mother was checked for an abortion referral. My husband is healthy in prison, because of the difficult financial situation she worked as a sex worker. Everyone with whom there is contact, partners were checked. I gave the phone number of an Uzbek, they checked it. He remembered that he was with a friend, there was double penetration and the friend was positive. They checked his daughter and his wife (brought him to the city), they are also positive.

The girl went on the run, because of custody, the child did not receive anything, died of pneumonia. The girl studied in the first year with me.

Answer 2
July, 2021

I found out about my HIV-positive status in 1999.

ARV therapy was prescribed ten years later. Now I have zero load and high immune status. I live a fulfilling life, go in for sports, study psychology, psychotherapy, philosophy, history and, as a peer-consultant, I help people living with HIV.

Answer 3
July, 2021

I will share my story. I am 34 years old, living with HIV for 15 years. During this time, I managed to graduate from a medical university and learn a lot about the disease.

But first - some statistics.

According to the World Health Organization, at the moment there are almost 37 million people living with HIV worldwide. 46% of them use modern medicine - they receive antiretroviral therapy.

The life expectancy of people with HIV depends on the region of residence, social status, the development of the health care system in the place of residence and the availability of medical care. Consider the data for North America. According to data published at the 2016 CROI conference, the life expectancy of HIV-positive people has increased significantly since the beginning of the epidemic.

That is, from the beginning of the epidemic to 2008, the average life expectancy for people with HIV in developed countries has grown steadily due to the discovery of new drugs and their introduction into medical practice. Moreover, it grew very quickly in the first five years of the beginning of the epidemic, because antiretroviral therapy began to be introduced in developed countries rather quickly. Therefore, 78 percent of deaths from HIV, which turned into AIDS, occur between 1988 and 1995. Between 2005 and 2009, the number of such deaths fell by 15 percent.

People have gained access to modern drugs and are living longer. By 2008, the difference in life expectancy for the average person with and without HIV was 13 years. And this gap continues to this day.

For example, in 1996-97, the life expectancy of a person who received HIV at the age of 20 averaged 19 years from the moment of infection. In other words, if a person found out about HIV at the age of 20, immediately started drug therapy, then on average he lived up to 39 years. For a person without HIV (HIV-negative), this period was 63 years, that is, there was every chance of living to 83 years.

By 2011, the average life span after being diagnosed with HIV at the age of 20 had increased to 53 years, that is, such a person with HIV, being under constant medical supervision, had every chance to live up to 73 years. Let's compare with the indicator for HIV-negative - their average life expectancy increased to 65 years, that is, there was every chance of living up to 85 years.

Why do people living with HIV die?

The first cause of death in people with HIV is the lack of timely treatment. Indeed, even with the availability of free medical care, many people begin to refuse it. The human immunodeficiency virus in the body of such people quickly affects the immune system and the body loses its ability to defend itself against commonplace infections.

Such a person easily gets sick with pneumonia, which turns into severe forms. Fungal infections of the skin and mucous membranes and internal organs (mouth, esophagus, trachea), common herpes begins to deliver a lot of inconvenience to a person. The likelihood of developing cancer is highaniy. The body begins to rapidly lose weight, people may begin to experience depression. In this condition, it is very easy to contract tuberculosis. And tuberculosis, unfortunately, remains one of the main causes of death of people living with HIV.

In addition to HIV, many people have hepatitis B and C. Several chronic diseases at once carry much greater risks to the body and often cause life-threatening diseases these patients develop complications of hepatitis B and / or C.

Why do people refuse treatment?

Someone begins to read HIV stories on social networks dissidents, imbued with conspiracy theories and refuses to take medications.

Other people begin to unreasonably think that antiretroviral therapy is toxic, "not natural", "not natural", "chemical". And I begin to be treated with homeopathy, herbal preparations and other practices.

Many people living with HIV are seen by a doctor only periodically and do not follow the mandatory daily pill regimen. Modern methods work only if the person is being treated deliberately, if he does not miss the daily intake of antiretroviral drugs. Gaps in taking medications lead to failure of the prescribed therapy, the virus begins to multiply again in the human body, and if no medical measures are taken, it goes into the AIDS stage.

Excessive alcohol and drug use also leads to periodic gaps in taking pills a and sometimes a complete interruption of treatment.

Any of the listed ways of interrupting HIV treatment lead to an increased risk of HIV progression to AIDS and premature death. These deaths can be prevented and such people can live an active life much longer.

If you are interested in more detailed figures on the global statistics of the HIV / AIDS epidemic - try the UNAIDS report (PDF).

It is possible to prevent the transition of HIV to the AIDS stage. To do this, it is imperative to see a specialist doctor at the place of residence, receive antiretroviral therapy, and conscientiously take pills on a schedule every day. Periodically, such people take blood tests to monitor the state of the patient's immune system by the attending physician, the success of suppressing the virus in the patient's blood. Such people can study, work, play sports, start families, become parents.

My story

I was diagnosed with HIV in February 2007. And I got the virus presumably in 2002. This means that I have been living with HIV for fifteen years, ten of which have been receiving antiretroviral therapy. Now I am 34 years old and I feel great.

I recently started using the Life4me + mobile application for HIV-positive people to monitor my performance. It allows me not to forget about taking medications, to enter the data of all blood tests, personal measurements.

Today is the world open data day. And I decided to make my ownnd small contribution to data disclosure and share with you the results of my analyzes over the past ten years of observation.

There are two lines on the chart. Red - viral load level (the number of viral units in one milliliter of blood). Blue - the number of CD4 lymphocytes (special cells of the immune system) in one milliliter of blood.

As you can see, at the beginning of the disease I had about 15 thousand units in my blood virus in one milliliter of blood. CD4 cells, “T-helper cells”, special cells of the immune system, in one milliliter of blood contained only 112 pieces. This is very little, because a healthy 25-year-old man should normally have from 500 to 1,500 such cells in one milliliter of blood.

Therefore, at the start of therapy, I had a high risk of contracting tuberculosis, I experienced inconvenience in the constant manifestation of fungal infections of the oral cavity. There was a high risk of developing severe pneumonia, cancer, toxoplasmosis, exacerbation of cytomegalovirus (traces of the presence of this virus in the blood were found), severe herpes infection and many other unusual diseases.

For example, cryptococcal meningitis - develops slowly, asymptomatic in the initial stage. Headache, dizziness, fever, blurred vision, epileptic seizures occur. With timely treatment, the prognosis of the disease is quite favorable. Higher doses of prescribed drugs can lead to complications, such as damage to the kidney membrane. Also, patients can develop renal failure, which can lead to their death in a state of uremic coma. If left untreated, the disease can be fatal.

But nothing happened, I got an appointment with a specialist at a local AIDS center on time and started antiretroviral therapy. On the graph, you can see the recovery of the CD4 cell count in the blood and the drop in the viral load to an undetectable level (practically to zero). From the moment my viral load dropped to zero, I ceased to be dangerous to uninfected people, even in the case of direct contact with my blood or sexual contact. This is a very important fact that many people should realize and remember. A person with HIV infection who receives antiretroviral therapy and this therapy is successful - becomes practically safe for partners without HIV. It is necessary, of course, to be observed by a doctor, to do tests, to protect yourself. But the risk is many orders of magnitudeless!

The graph shows a spike in viral load in 2015 and a drop in CD4 cell counts. This was due to an interruption in the use of antiretroviral drugs. This was an irresponsible behavior towards my body on my part. The reason for this was a serious and prolonged depression. People with HIV are often depressed. She often causes interruptions in therapy, and sometimes even attempts at suicide. This is another cause of early deaths for people living with HIV.

What is the cause of depression? Basically, it's stigma. This is a forced concealment of their diagnosis from many people. Anxiety about your future. Lack of vision of the dynamics of their disease. Often, a simple graph, a picture, will give a person more hope than the persuasion of friends and relatives.

It was very useful for me to go through this state. I began to understand other people more, the reasons for their irresponsible behavior in relation to their body and loved ones. And you can fight this. To do this, we should try to better understand each other. I believe that HIV is humanity's temporary travel companion. We we will definitely be able to develop methods for a complete cure for HIV , and in recent years we have seen more and more encouraging research results.

Thank you for your question.

P. S. I told in this text about the mobile application for HIV-positive people Life4me +. I found it very important for the community of people living with HIV. Recently I joined this great team and now I will talk about my experience of using the application. It is very important for me, our team, to hear questions from people living with HIV.

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