Could Babies From HIV-Positive Pregnant Women Be Saved From Getting The Virus?

By Joshua Williams, Parent Herald December 03, 11:04 pm
TAG Aids, hiv, victims
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Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation CEO Chip Lyons, Dr. Leo Buhendwa, Foundation Country Director for Lesotho and Jake Glaser attend Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation's 2011 Kids for Kids Family Carnival at Skylight SOHO on November 5, 2011 in New York City.
(Photo : Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for Kids For Kids)

AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) or HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) has taken so many lives in the past several decades. But in recent years, international governments and organizations have initiated plans to help put an end to this global public health concern.

Due to the efforts of doctors, researchers and health care services, there has been a prominent drop in the HIV rates in the past 15 years. According to CBS News, American Academy of Pediatrics chair Dr. Ellen Gould Chadwick said the prevention campaigns have brought a great change, specifically for HIV-positive mothers-to-be.

Chadwick further stated that even though HIV is incurable, antiretroviral medications throughout the pregnancy could reduce the chances of a mother transferring HIV infection to the infant. Seattle Children Hospital Pediatric Infectious Diseases assistant professor Dr. Thor Wagner, an experienced professional in the treatment of AIDS, says that children get the HIV infection from their mothers in utero (inside the womb) and during the delivery.

Moreover, babies could also get infected by HIV through breastfeeding. During his practice, children have suffered a lot as there were families dealing with the shame and embarrassment of letting others know that their child got AIDS from them and the kids also had to deal with the stigma.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed most new infections are found in young people  ages between 13 and 24, USA Extra News noted. Gay men and bisexual people are also more exposed to the danger of HIV infection. What's more frightening, however, is the fact that many young people are not aware that they have the virus.

Dr. Wagner has been working on studies to find the cure for HIV infection. But Wagner stressed that while there are some trials going on, it's too early to say when scientists would finally found an effective cure to the virus.

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