HIV/ AIDS

AIDS stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome

  • Acquired means you can get infected with it
  • Immune Deficiency means a weakness in the body’s system that fights diseases
  • Syndrome means a group of health problems in the body’s system that make up a disease

AIDS is caused by a virus called HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus). Being HIV positive is not the same as having full-blown AIDS. Many people are HIV-positive but may not get sick for many years. As HIV progresses to full-blown AIDS, the immune system gets weaker, allowing viruses, parasites, fungi and bacteria, that usually don’t cause any problems, to cause opportunistic infections and make the HIV-positive person very sick.

Symptoms

Some people develop symptoms shortly after being infected. On average:

  • It takes more than 7-10 years to develop symptoms
  • There are several stages of HIV disease
  • The first symptom of HIV disease is often swollen lymph glands in the throat, armpit, or groin
  • Other early symptoms include slight fever, headaches, fatigue and muscle aches. They may only last for a few weeks. Then there are usually no symptoms for many years.

Treatment

There is currently no cure for HIV/AIDS although there are a variety of new treatments and medication cocktails that help people manage the disease and maintain their normal life activities.

Prevention

  • Use condoms to prevent transmission of bodily fluids.
  • Be tested and treated for sexually transmitted infections every year.
  • Do not have sex if you have any open sores or rawness of skin because women and men with open sores from herpes and other infections get HIV more easily than other people.
  • If you are a drug-user, avoid sharing needles with others and disinfect needles prior to use.
  • Other preventative measures are limiting the number of sex partners, practicing sexual abstinence and avoiding sexual contact if you think you are infected.

In Plymouth Magazine

Example Image

Teaming Up for Service

There’s more to PSU’s student-athletes than excellent grades and athletic prowess. There’s a desire to make a difference in the world. Plymouth State men’s hockey coach Craig Russell ’09 encourages his team to serve as often as possible. Through the nonprofit organization Team IMPACT, which pairs children with life-threatening or chronic illness with local college […]

Example Image

PSU Collaboration Leads to Emmy

When Trish Lindberg was a 17-year-old musician, artist, and actor, her mother—a teacher herself—told her she would make a great teacher. Lindberg looked her mother right in the eye and said, “I will never be a teacher!” Mother Knows Best Decades later, Lindberg, now a Carnegie Foundation NH Professor of the Year, a recipient of […]