The Human Immunodeficiency Virus ( Hiv )

948 Words Mar 8th, 2015 4 Pages
The Uses of Blood by the HIV Virus
Blood-borne diseases have contributed greatly to poor health outcomes among individuals and communities. Though blood fulfills various functions to ensure our survival, it can also act as the mechanism through which we become diseased. Understanding the characteristics of such infectious diseases is essential to preventing further cases. In this paper I will discuss how the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) uses blood to cause illness within the infected individual and transmit to others. In particular, this paper will assess the implications of HIV/AIDS for individuals, between people, and in societies.
The outbreak of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) was first recognized in the 1980s in the United States, primarily in the gay community. Homosexual men in New York and California were among the first to display symptoms of AIDS, though at this time the cause of the symptoms was unknown (Avert, 2014a). In 1981, five cases of pneumonia were diagnosed in gay men in Los Angeles. The misconception of HIV occurring only within this population group was fuelled as more cases of HIV developed (AIDS.gov, n.d.). While the epidemic continued, it was eventually realized that HIV could impact anyone exposed through the various routes of transmission and not just by sexual contact. Blood was identified to be another important method of transmission for the virus when, in 1982, an infant was diagnosed with HIV after receiving blood transfusions…
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