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Other diseases and thrush?
Apr 16, 1997

I realize that on previous occasions you have mentioned that all the opportunistic dieseases that prey on people when they are HIV+ are all symptoms of other illnesses, I was wondering what other illnesses might bring on an occurrence of thrush? Thanks.

Response from Mr. Sowadsky

Hi. Thank you for your question.

Thrush is a yeast infection in the mouth. It commonly occurs in children, but is not normally seen in adults. In adults, it normally occurs when there is some type of problem with the immune system. The more severely damaged the immune system, the greater the chances that thrush (and other opportunistic diseases) will occur. People who have other diseases of the immune system (like leukemia), persons with various forms of cancer, and persons who are on immunosupressive drugs (like organ transplant recipients), can also get Thrush. These groups of people can also get other opportunistic infections as well. The key to remember is that opportunistic diseases are not just seen in persons with AIDS. They're also seen in persons with other problems involving the immune system. If a person is diagnosed with an opportunistic disease (including Thrush), they are often tested for HIV, and other diseases of the immune system as well. But having an opportunistic disease does not necessarily mean the person has AIDS. Remember, other diseases involving problems with the immune system can also lead to opportunistic infections. Thrush is also sometimes seen in persons on strong antibiotics. However, once the antibiotics are discontinued, Thrush should go away.

If you have any further questions, please feel free to call the Centers for Disease Control at 1.800.232.4636 (Nationwide).



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