What Are HIV and AIDS?

 

HIV and AIDS pic

HIV and AIDS
Image: WebMD.com

Amna Osman has years of experience in healthcare leadership and leadership coaching. Much of the work Amna Osman has done has focused on HIV and AIDS, helping spread information regarding this syndrome and reducing its incidence among women and girls.

AIDS begins with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which attacks the host’s immune system through its T cells. By reducing the number of active T cells in the body, HIV encourages the development of infections or infection-related cancers in its host. HIV eventually damages the immune system enough that it can no longer deal with infections or mutations. Severe HIV infection leads to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).

Fortunately, HIV can be treated through antiretroviral therapy (ART), which reduces the speed with which HIV destroys the immune system. Should the disease be caught early and treated with proper daily medication, those with HIV can live much longer, healthier lives. ART also reduces the rate of transmission to others, which diminishes the stigma once associated with this illness.

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