History of HIV

There are several important issues that the present day population is facing, and the sad truth is that in case of some of them we can't even fight effectively. There are some diseases that we don't have treatments for, like HIV. Let us get to know something about the history of HIV.

Up to 1980

Sadly there is no real information about infected people during the 1970s or the years before that. We might say that this period might be characterized as silence, because HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) has not been reported, and the methods of transmission have been unknown. There haven't been any symptoms that would have made the illness to be recognized. There have been some reports that indicated humans being were infected with HIV, and there have been some studies that have shown the presence of the illness before 1970. Still research has shown that the epidemic started during the 1970s. By 1980 the disease has been present on at least five of the continents: North America, South America, Australia, Europe and Africa. In this period people felt uncomfortable to discuss this illness, and so there was no awareness and it is said that about 100,000-300,000 people might have been infected in that period.

Even more, at this point it is still uncertain from where the virus originally came, but the majority of scientists say that it might be tracked back to Africa.

History starting from 1981

There is a kind of rare and relatively benign cancer known as Kaposi's sarcoma that has been known to appear in the case of older people. Nevertheless, by March 1981, there have been at least eight cases of an aggressive form of this sarcoma among young gay men who have been living in New York.

In the same period specialists recognized the fact that there had been an increasing number in people who had a rare lung infection both in New York and in California. This illness is known as Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (commonly referred to as PCP). In April, in the same year, the CDC observed a growing number of PCPs in Atlanta as well. There was a drug technician called Sandra Ford who observed an increase in the demand for pentamine, a drug that has been used to treat PCP. In that period it was said that a doctor was treating a gay young person who was suffering from pneumonia. Two weeks later he asked for a refill of the rare drug. This has been strange because nobody ever asked for a refill since they were supposed to get cured in about 10 days. In the same year there has been an article published about the increase of appearance of PCP.

Only after this there were investigation on the outbreak, and it was noticed that it was concentrated only in young gay men. Thus came the discovery of AIDS.

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HIV : History of HIV : HIV Symptoms : How Do you Get HIV : How to Prevent HIV : HIV Treatment : Types of HIV : HIV Infection : HIV AIDS : HIV Facts : HIV Myths : HIV Life Cycle : HIV Prevention : HIV Rash : HIV Statistics HIV Test : HIV Virus : HIV Helplines