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Relationships and Sexuality :
AIDS - Initial Theories and Disease Progression

AIDS, or the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, is a deadly disease caused by the human immunodeficiency virus. It is usually spread through contact of bodily fluids, and more than 33 million people worldwide are infected. But it continues to be a stigmatized disease, and sufferers find it difficult to get support for their condition.

If you, or your family member, or a friend, has AIDS, or you are a doctor who treats AIDS, join this online AIDS forum to meet others with the same condition and find support and resources.


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1. Where did HIV come from?

Scientists have different theories about the origin of HIV, but none have been proven. The earliest known case of HIV was from a blood sample collected in 1959 from a man in Kinshasha, Democratic Republic of Congo.

2. How does HIV cause AIDS?

HIV destroys CD4+ T cells (helper cells) which are crucial to the normal function of the human immune system.

3. How long does it take for HIV to cause AIDS?

Scientists have estimated that about half the people with HIV develop AIDS within 10 years after becoming infected. But the time period greatly varies from person to person.

4. Can people assume responsibility in preventing HIV infection?

Both men and women share the responsibility for avoiding behavior that might lead to HIV infection.

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