Dates In AIDS History
AIDS is a disease the likes of which the world hasn’t seen in many years. It is reaching pandemic levels of
infection across the world and
it can be very deadly. In this article, we’ll go over a little bit of the brief history behind how AIDS has come
to affect the world.
- In the year of 1958, the disease known as AIDS struck its first victim. A man by the name of David Carr
began to become very ill, expressing mysterious symptoms such as pneumocystis carinii. The following year, he died.
The disease was still unknown at that point, and tissue samples from Carr showed to be HIV
positive when tested in 1990.
- 1959 also showed the first active HIV infection. A man in the Congo proved to be positive for two of six
of the genes that make up the AIDS disease. His blood was preserved and later tested.
Consequently, the first case of AIDS in America occurred in 1959. A Haitian man in New York City died of
pneumocystis carinii, a common problem for those with AIDS. Dr. Gordon Hennigar examined the man’s corpse and
believed AIDS was responsible for the death.
- 1969 was the next time that AIDS would show itself in America. A teenager in St. Louis was found to have
died of an illness that left his doctors clueless. In 1987, tests confirmed that the boy had indeed died of
- In 1975, symptoms of AIDS began to appear throughout Africa. In the following few years, the disease
would begin to find its way around the world. In 1976, a Norwegian sailor died of AIDS that he likely contracted in
Africa in the 1960’s. In 1977 a man from Denmark and a woman from San Francisco were found to be infected with the
disease, with both cases coming from the African continent. The woman in San Francisco had given birth to three
children who also carried the disease.
Did You Know?
The signs of symptoms of AIDS or HIV are different depending on what stage the
infection is in. When a person is first infected they may have flu-like symptoms and swollen lymph
nodes but recover quickly.
This flu-like sickness may occur two to six weeks after being infected and is not always associated
with the possibility of HIV infection. Even if you do not have any of these symptoms until years
later, you can still infect other people with the virus.
Once your body is invaded with the HIV or AIDS virus, your immune system is under attack. Even
though you may not be having any symptoms, you can still pass the disease on to another person.
Meanwhile, even if you are symptom free, your cells that coordinate your immune system are slowly
You can remain this way for as many as ten years but during that time you will begin it experience
more frequent infections as your immune cells are destroyed.
You may experience chronic symptoms such as diarrhea, weight loss, shortness of breath, cough,
fever, and unexplained weight loss.
- HIV-2 was first diagnosed in 1978, occurring in a Portuguese man who claimed he probably got infected in
- In 1980, a man named Gaetan Dugas traveled to the bathhouses of New York and likely introduced the
disease to America in a major way. He became known as “Patient Zero” due to the wide spread of the infection that
Take an active role in choosing treatment for your disease. Depression can cause you to lose interest in your
health and treatment but this is something you should fight against. Don’t put your life and quality of life
in someone else’s hands. You should always be active in the choice of treatment choices.
Making sure your immune system is in top shape is the best way to prolong life with
HIV and Aids.
Robert Gallo would be instrumental in further pushing our understanding of the disease later on, as
he discovered that a compound known as chemokines can be helpful in slowing the progression of the disease in the
year of 1996.
These are just a few of the landmark moments in our understanding of AIDS. As our knowledge continues to grow, we
gain more and more hope that the disease is something that we will eventually be able to conquer.