AIDS and HIV Information

Five Classes of Antiretroviral
Drugs for Treating AIDS

Research is still going on for treatments and vaccines that will help an AIDS patient.  There is no cure for AIDS.  Drugs are used to prolong and give the patient a better quality of life.  A lot has been accomplished since the early 80’s when AIDS was first discovered, but scientists do not see a cure coming soon.  It takes years to find a drug that will work to either boost the immune system, or fight the destruction of the white blood cells.  Clinical trials are still needed to find drugs that work and each individual will respond to these drugs in their own way. 

Although there is no cure for AIDS, drugs have been developed to inhibit growth and reproduction of the HIV.  Five classes of drugs are available.

Nucleoside analogue reverse transcriptase inhibitors were the first antiretroviral drugs to be developed.  The slow down the multiplication of an HIV enzyme called reverse transcriptase.  This class includes the drugs, Retrovir, Epivir, Videx, Hivid, Zerit and Ziagen.  These drugs must be used in a combination with two other AIDS drugs that will treat both HIV and hepatitis B.  There are serious side effects for each of these drugs.  The symptoms will usually appear in the first few weeks of treatment and will disappear if the drugs are stopped.  Some side effects include, vomiting, nausea, stomach pain, fatigue, and trouble breathing.

Protease inhibitors are drugs that will stop the HIV reproduction when the disease is in a later stage.  This drug causes the HIV particles in your body to become nonorganized and noninfectious.  Drugs in this class are Norvir, Crixivan, Viracept, Reyataz, Aptivus Prezista and Agenerase.  Some patients who have not responded to other AIDS medications may respond with this class of drugs.  Most are used with other AIDS medications.  The most common side effects of protease inhibitors are stomach and digestive problems such as diarrhea and vomiting.  A problem with the metabolism of sugar is a side effect of some of the newer protease inhibitors.

Did You Know? 

Since 1981 when the HIV and Aids was first recognized as something new in the medical world, researchers and scientists have been working to learn as much about the new disease as possible. So far they have determined the virus is spread by contact with another contaminated person’s body fluids.

This could be through contact with blood, semen, and vaginal fluids. Once the body has the HIV virus it begins to produce more HIV particles and these begin attacking the T-cells. The T-cells or CD4 cells burst and that allows the virus to enter the bloodstream and invade other cells. You should already know the difference between HIV and AIDS. HIV is a subgroup of retroviruses that cause AIDS.

The virus kills cells in the body’s immune system and progressively destroys the body’s ability to fight infections. This inability to fight off infections also affects some cancers too. HIV gradually gets worse until the body is no longer able to fight off the infections and other bacteria that would normally not make people sick.

These opportunistic infections will attack the body and could be potentially life threatening. AIDS is the acronym for Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome. It was first recognized in New York City in 1981. The virus was isolated and identified in 1983, but it wasn’t until 1985 that a diagnostic test was developed to test for the disease.

The third-class of AIDS drugs is NNRTIs or nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors.  This class of drugs will bind to the enzyme reverse transcriptase.  Side effects for this class include sleeplessness, abnormal dreams, trouble in concentrating, and dizziness.

The fourth class works much like the third-class.  They prevent the virus from putting its genetic material into the cells.  This class will work faster and are effective for patients who are resistant to NNRTIs.  There can be a fatal complication of liver damage by taking this class of drugs for AIDS treatment.


AIDS Facts

The best way to avoid HIV aids is to avoid taking part in risky behavior, so make sure to not have unprotected sex and make sure to use sterilized needles for injections.

Fusion inhibitors are drugs that are used on patients with a drug resistant form of HIV.  Many people with AIDS are resistant to at least one drug and many will not respond to a three-drug combination.  These new classes of drugs called inhibitors are given by injection and suppress some resistant strains of the HIV virus.  When you are being medicated with any of these classes of drugs, you will have your viral load tested every three to four months.



Better Your Health

HIV and AIDS Information and Resources
World Health Organization’s AIDS Staging
History of AIDS Looking Closer at the HIV Virus and AIDS
Living With HIV and AIDS
Know the Basics about AIDS
What are the Causes of AIDS
Homeopathic Ways of Treating the AIDS Patient
AIDS and the Nervous System
Options If You Are HIV Positive
The AIDS Patient and Opportunistic Infections
Advanced Signs of the HIV Virus
Tests For the HIV Virus
Other Health Concerns For The AIDS Patient
Prayer And Spirituality Used In The Treatment Of AIDS
How To Prepare For Your AIDS Medical Appointment
Aids and Viral Complications
Parasitic Infections Common to HIV Patients
AIDS Related Lymphoma
Treating AIDS Related Lymphoma
Serious Complications Associated With The HIV Virus
White Blood Cells And AIDS
Neurological Complications Associated with AIDS
What To Do If You Think You Might Have Aids
New Developments In AIDS Research
Coping With Your AIDS Diagnosis
The Symptoms of HIV Infection
Education Is The Key To Stopping the AIDS Epidemic
The Emphasis Must Be On Prevention for HIV and AIDS
AIDS Medical Terms
Take An Active Role In Your AIDS Medical Treatment
Reducing The HIV Risk Factors
Keeping A Positive Outlook For AIDS Patients
Acupuncture To Relieve The Side Effects Of AIDS Treatment
A Healthy Lifestyle Can Help You Treat AIDS
AIDS Patients Are In It For Life
Basic AIDS Information
Do You Need To Let Everyone Know That You Are HIV Positive
Important Vitamins and Minerals for a Person with HIV
Treatments Available for the Patient with HIV or AIDS
Ways You Cannot Get The HIV Virus
Treatments Available for the HIV Positive Woman
Understanding the Basics of HIV
The United States AIDS Policy
Treatment Guidelines for the AIDS Patient
Treating Serious Illnesses in The AIDS Patient
HIV Transmission
How The HIV Virus Progresses
The Fear the AIDS Stigma Brings
I Tested Positive For the HIV Virus: What Now
How To Tell Other People You Are HIV Positive
Facts And Myths Regarding HIV Transmission
Some Recent Advances In The Fight Against AIDS
Preventive Measures You Can Take Concerning HIV Infection
Dates In AIDS History
The Impact of AIDS On MSM, Men Who Have Sex With Men
Dealing With Malnutrition For The HIV Infected Person
Know Your Personal HIV Risk Factors
Keeping Yourself AIDS Free
Are Condoms Effective As Protection Against AIDS Transmission
Juicings Possible Benefits To The Person With HIV
What Are The Initial Signs and Symptoms of HIV Infections
Five Classes of Antiretroviral Drugs for Treating AIDS
Dietary Needs And The HIV Patient
Misconceptions About AIDS
Oh No I have AIDS
The Staggering AIDS Statistics
Exercise May Boost Your Imune System
Aids And The Toll On Families
Immunization Needs For Adult AIDS Patients
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome: The Basic Facts
Is There A Silver Lining in The Cloud of AIDS
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