Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Modes of Transmission of HIV/ AIDS and prevention

Modes of Transmission
  • Unsafe sexual contact with HIV infected person
  • With infected blood transfusion
  • Use of skin-piercing injection, blade, etc. without sterilization
  • Mother to baby (during pregnancy, during delivery and during breastfeeding)

Preventive measures of HIV/ AIDS and other STIs
  • Sexual behaviors before matured age are unsafe. Sexual decisions in early age may not be appropriate. Sexual behaviors which are considered as safe may not be safe for the people in early age due to the lack of proper knowledge and skills. Therefore, we must avoid sexual intercourse in early age in order to prevent STIs.
  • Abstain yourself. If not possible, adopt safe sex
  • Between two or be mutually faithful for sexual intercourse. Avoid multiple sex partners because healthy looking persons might also be infected with STIs
  • Consistent use of condom as it also prevents pregnancy
  • Do not use unsterilized needles, blades, scissors etc
  • Blood transfusion should be done after proper test
  • Infected women must not give birth to a baby
  • We must increase mass awareness and discourage girls trafficking and prostitution. Similarly, we have to emphasis on female education and female employment in order to save from this fatal disease
  • We must adopt kind feeling and co-operation to STI victims for their treatment and care. Advise STI patients on the consistent use of condom and spermicides while they make sexual contact.


AIDs stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. Our body has the immune system that fights against diseases. When this immunity is lost, we get suffered from various diseases. As a result, various symptoms can emerge.  AIDS is not a disease but that stage in which various symptoms and syndromes can emerge. Though AIDS was medically recognized only in 1981 in USA, it is widely and rapidly spreading all over the world. Over 2 decades, more than 40 million people are suffering from this fatal disease. Though its virus appeared later in Asian countries, it is more rapidly spreading here than other regions. In Nepal, first case of AIDS was identified in 1988 but the cases are rapidly increasing. Now about more than 60 thousand people are estimated to be infected of HIV in Nepal.

Causes of HIV/ AIDS
The causative agent for this disease  is retrovirus which is called HIV (Human Immune-deficiency Virus). This virus destroys the immune system of producing the antibody to fight against the germs of disease. In the lack of antibody, we cannot be healthy. After entering it in our body, it takes about 6 to 12 weeks for virus to be seen in blood test. This unidentified period is window period. When HIV is detected, this stage is carrier stage. Similarly, when symptoms are seen, it is only the stage of AIDS.

Symptoms of HIV/ AIDS
Symptoms cannot be seen immediately in HIV infected patients and it may take 10-15 years. As the immunity of patients is lost any common disease may suffer them. The symptoms are seen according to the disease they have suffered. However, TB is found in almost HIV patients in Nepal.

The symptoms of AIDS can be classified as major and minor sign. A person can be AIDS patient if at least 2 major signs and one minor sign appear.
Major Sign of HIV/ AIDS
  • Loss of weight more than 10% of usual body weight within one month
  • Continuous fever for more than 1 month
  • Continuous diarrhea for more than 1 month

Minor Sign of HIV/ AIDS
  • Coughing of more than a month
  • Itching and skin rashes
  • Recurrent herpes zoster
  • Chancres appear around lip and nostril
  • Not recovery of some common and curable diseases like common cold, diarrhea, TB etc.
  • Repeatedly suffering of pneumonia
  • Thrush or inflammation in mouth and throat
  • Swelling of glands for a long time


Gonorrhea is called Sujak or Dhatu in Nepali. It affects genitals, urinary tract, rectum, cervix etc. its causative agent is gonococcus of neisser. This bacterium can easily dies in sunshine. It found in the pus coming from genitals.

Mode of transmission
  • Sexual intercourse with infected person
  • The contact with virus containing vaginal discharge

The symptoms of gonorrhea are not clear but they differ according to the structure of sexual organs infected organs. Its dangerous effect is cause infertility. Some common symptoms are as follows:
  • Painful, burning and frequent urination
  • Discharge of yellow puss from penis and vagina
  • Inflammation in urinary tract and genitals
  • Small reddish rashes appear around genitals
  • In women, abdominal pain in one or two sides, fever, nausea and irregularity of menstruation
  • In male, pus is collected in prostate gland
  • Eye infection and chancres in genitals in neonatal baby
  • Uneasiness in genitals due to swelling

Preventive measures
  • Adopt healthy and appropriate sexual behavior.
  • Discourage unsafe sexual behavior with others.
  • Mass awareness on reproductive and sexual health education
  • Discourage girls trafficking, prostitution and multiple sex
  • Both consult doctor if any one of the couple is infected
  • Use clothing and utensils after proper disinfection (washing)
  • Care to personal and genital hygiene
  • Should increase female education and employment to avoid prostitution
  • Immediately consult the doctor for treatment when you suspect


Syphilis is the oldest disease among sexually transmitted disease. It affects main organs of our body like heart, lever and brain. 'Treponema Pallidum' virus causes this disease. The virus can survive for longer period.

Mode of transmission:
  • Through unsafe sex with patients of syphilis.
  • With use of blood of its patient.
  • To the baby through infected mother by birth.
Symptoms of Syphilis
First Stage
  • A single typical chancre (wart) appears mainly in genital organ, lips, fingertip, tongue, breast or mouth. It appears 2-4 weeks after infection. The chancre does not ache or itch. And chancre itself disappears after 1 to 5 weeks.

Second Stage
  • Reddish and pale skin rashes appear.
  • Swelling in joints of bone.
  • Hair loss and weigh loss can be felt.
  • Patient suffers from common cold.

Third Stage
  • If not treated timely, following symptoms are seen.
  • Symptoms of heart problems
  • Eye problems and blindness
  • Patient become unconscious and mentally impaired