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crazy idea from uk?
Sep 13, 2002

After reading the book The hot zone which deals with the ebola virus, one paragraph states that viruses(all?)fall apart under ultra violet light.If this is the case (forgive my lack of knowlage of all things medical)then could not HIV infected blood be drawn through a dialysis system with some sort of ultra violet light attachment therefore causing HIV virus particals to fall apart? Could this be a viable treatment option if not only to give people a break from meds or destroy resistant virus. Its probably a crazy idea but with this horrible virus all avenues should be explored.Keep up the good work and thanks to all at THE BODY.

Response from Dr. Wohl

Ah, the old light therapy idea, if I had a nickel for every time someone suggested this ....

Well, truthfully, I've no right to make fun and must tell you that a few years back when I was working in Africa, I stuck myself with a needle that I had used to draw blood from an HIV-infected woman. I, of course panicked, rushed to a sink, washed the puncture in my finger and then sat outside holding my poor thumb to the African sky hoping some of those UV rays would fry any virus that happened to find its way into me. So, how can I, a guy who sat in the blazing equatorial heat with my first digit held out like some lunatic trying to hitchhike passing UFOs, deride your attempts to do the same.

The fact is though it won't work. The blood is a mere highway that HIV uses to get places. The virus lives deep in the lymph nodes and other tissues deep inside of us where, well, the sun just doesn't shine. Keep trying though- DW



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