AIDS and Women
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a degraded immunological condition of people which includes various complex stages of HIV virus in human body. The cosmopolitan distribution of the virus has threatened the world since decades and the unknown physiological performance of HIV has made the disease as the most worked arena of Medicine and Pharmacology.
As AIDS permeated through the landscapes of the globe, women acquiring HIV also increased steadily. WHO had shown a data of 17.5 million women worldwide being infected with HIV by the year 2005. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) of US had estimated 10% inflation in the number of women getting HIV in the span of 2000-2004 while men being 7% only. One of the CDC article writes that at some point in women lifetimes, a round figure of 1 in 32 black\African American women will be diagnosed by HIV infection which is 1 in 106 in Hispanic\Latino women and 1 in 526 white women.
This increment in women population with HIV may be due to the unavailability of knowledge on risk factors in poorer African countries and a cause of male domination among female sex workers as well as among the society which has fostered disease among female. The fact of 15% HIV infected women being unaware of their status justifies above statement. While looking towards a more scientific cause, it is found that higher risk is possible in case of unprotected vaginal sex which is the major mode of disease transmission. Also unprotected anal sex is even more perilous than unprotected vaginal sex.
The statement that ‘the infection lacks any specific gynecological conditions linked’ is undisputedly true. But even if women do not encounter HIV during sex they may have unique problems complications such as:-
∞ Vaginal yeast infection
∞ Severe pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
∞ A higher risk of cervical cancer
∞ Bacterial vaginosis etc.
Perinatal transmission from mother to child during pregnancy, labor and delivery or breastfeeding makes women even more vulnerable with the disease due to the probability of HIV infected fetus or child after birth. Some HIV\AIDS medicines are found to harm the fetus in the womb.
American physiological centre admits that the AIDs has male centered approach for its diagnosis, treatment and care which has made it even more tough for female to cope with the disease and receive treatment appropriately. Also stigmatization is higher among women than men due to their dependency on men among poorer countries. so to initiate a change the disease should also be looked through gender perspective so that equitable access to medication and diagnosis is possible.