HIV/AIDS BLOG CENTRAL
Shana Cozad: The Pain Blog
"I acknowledge you. I feel you with my every walk and climbing of stairs, I feel you when I sit and I feel you when I lay down. ... I wanted nothing more when I was growing up than to be acknowledged for who I was. Perhaps you need to be acknowledged too." Shana Cozad shares her unique way of coping with the physical pain from a myriad of ailments and HIV treatment side effects.
Jermaine Wright: Gift Givers
They're rare, but they're out there: "Bug chasers," or people who seek to become HIV positive, and "gift givers," or HIV-positive people who gladly help them achieve their goal. Jermaine Wright once found himself invited to a gift-giver party; although he acknowledges his own debatable behavior in the past, in this case there was no question about his reaction.
Ibrahim: Status Undetectable
In his latest blog entry, Ibrahim plays with the idea of having an "undetectable" HIV status (hint: he's not talking about his viral load!), and talks about why he hides his own status from others. "I know that reversing how detectable my status is can only start within me," he writes. "I guess my fear of this status is the fear of being rejected and deprived from love that status determines."
Join Dr. Bob's Friends and Family on Nov. 11 for a Public Reception Celebrating His Life
For those of you who'll be in the Saratoga, Calif., area this coming Friday, a public ceremony to celebrate the life of Bob Frascino, M.D., (Dr. Bob) will take place at 2 p.m. at Villa Montalvo. This brief flier distributed by Dr. Bob's husband Steven Natterstad, M.D., (Dr. Steve) has more information if you'd like to stop by and pay your respects.
HIV TREATMENT & HEALTH ISSUES
On TheBodyPRO.com: HIV and Sexual Function in Women Over 50
"How do we as clinical practitioners proceed with our HIV-positive women over 50 who report sexual dysfunction? Do we tell them they are just 'frigid,' as women in general were told decades ago?" nurse practitioner Bethsheba Johnson asks in our "HIV Care Today" blog on TheBodyPRO.com. "Oh, no we don't. ... [W]e must assist them in being healthy sexual beings."
Isentress Label Adds Severe Skin Reaction Warning
The package insert that accompanies Isentress (raltegravir) prescriptions now includes a warning about the drug's potential to cause severe, potentially even life-threatening skin reactions. Although uncommon, these intense reactions can be dangerous, making it important to contact a health care provider immediately if symptoms occur.
Researchers Look at Social Media's Role in HIV Treatment Adherence
When it comes to HIV treatment adherence, remembering to take your meds is just half the battle. Researchers note that factors such as depression or drug use can cause people to miss doses despite getting reminders. That's one reason why scientists are exploring the creation of new Facebook-like sites designed to help people with HIV support one another.
Taking Your HIV Meds Every Day: A Step-by-Step Video Guide
"The way you handle this next stage of your HIV is going to determine how well you live the rest of your life," says Joe Ohmer in this step-by-step video guide. He should know: Joe is living with HIV himself, and as an HIV treatment adherence peer educator in a busy clinic, it's his job to help others learn to stick to their meds. In this helpful video, Joe talks about and shows you key tools that can help you plan for taking HIV meds.
More Headlines on HIV Treatment and Health Issues:
Isentress in HIV-Negative Women: Worth the Safety Risk?
(A recent post from the "Treatment & Side Effects" board)
"I'm HIV negative, but I'm considering enrolling in a study that uses Isentress to determine if twice daily dose of raltegravir results in drug concentration levels in the female genital tract that are sufficient enough to block HIV-1 infection of cells.
"I'm wondering if there are any long term permanent effects to participating or risks of side effects that might lower my quality of life while on the study. Can anyone shed some light on this for me? I'm certain the study coordinators will give me some information, but I came here because people on here have much more 'real world' knowledge of taking this than they would."
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HIV IN THE NEWS
Hillary Clinton Expresses U.S. Commitment to Creating "AIDS-Free Generation"
In a rare speech by a top U.S. official addressing HIV, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton this week committed the U.S. to ramping up its efforts to create the first "AIDS-free generation" by employing a range of prevention efforts, including the "treatment as prevention" approach. Focusing almost entirely on resource-poor countries, Clinton announced new initiatives and implored other countries to step up their own commitments.
Rounding Up the Coverage on Magic Johnson's HIV Announcement Anniversary
Nov. 7, 1991, was the day Magic Johnson announced to the public that he was living with HIV and was going to retire from professional basketball. On the 20th anniversary of his announcement, let's take a look at how the media commemorated this historic day.
Head of U.S. Office of National AIDS Policy Announces Resignation
"Jeff Crowley, Director of the Office of National AIDS Policy, announced yesterday that he is resigning from his post effective in December," Candace Y.A. Montague reports. "He stated that there is never really a good time to leave a position like his and that he is ready to move on to the next phase of his life."
More News Headlines:
This year's U.S. Conference on AIDS (USCA 2011) is underway! Most of our team is in Chicago to attend sessions, take part in events, hang out at our booth (come visit!), conduct interviews (maybe with you, if you're interested!) and partake of general merriment. Say hi or tweet us:
Olivia Ford (our community manager): @o_g_ford
Kellee Terrell (our news editor): @kelleent
Warren Tong (our associate editor): @WarrenAtTheBody
OPINIONS & PERSPECTIVES
Will This Generation's Magic Johnson Please Stand Up?
This week marks 20 years since Magic Johnson disclosed his HIV status, instantly changing the face of the epidemic. But today, we're starving for a straight, male celebrity with HIV who can be this generation's role model. We're certain he's out there, somewhere. Our news editor Kellee Terrell asks: "What will it take for him to come forward?"
HIV/AIDS Resource Center for Latinos: An Interview with Rafael Abadia
"I got to see the 'dirty side' of AIDS in the '80s and '90s," Rafael Abadia remarks. "Younger people really haven't. I don't think they see the urgency." Rafael came close to death several times in those early years of the epidemic, and has taken numerous HIV treatment regimens. Nowadays, he's tirelessly working to raise awareness of HIV in Latino communities in his home state of Florida.
This interview is also available in Spanish.
HIV Itself May Be a "Hot Mess," but the Women Living With It Are Not
"One of my favorite phrases is 'hot mess,'" Kellee Terrell writes. She reported from an important leadership conference last month focusing on women and HIV/AIDS advocacy in the U.S. "How HIV replicates after binding to the host cell is a 'hot mess.' ... And how too many women across the country -- both negative and positive -- know so little about this disease is a 'hot mess' as well."
More Opinions & Perspectives:
Visit the November 2011 Visual AIDS Web Gallery to view our latest collection of art by HIV-positive artists! This month's gallery, entitled "i am anyone," is curated by Anthony Allen.
HIV/STD TRANSMISSION & EDUCATION
In Pennsylvania, New Program Seeks to Teach Kids HIV Prevention With Music, Dance
HIV/AIDS advocacy group Philadelphia FIGHT will partner with the Netherlands-based "dance41ife" program to teach HIV prevention skills to local schools and youth organizations. "What we have found with dance41ife, more than any other program designed to help reach young people [transitioning] into adolescence, is that this has been the most successful," said Jane Shull, executive director of Philadelphia FIGHT.
Media Coverage of Potential Link Between Hormonal Contraception, HIV Risk Needed More "Critical Thinking," Expert Says
In a Nature News opinion piece, James Shelton, science adviser for USAID's Bureau for Global Health, criticizes media coverage of recent findings suggesting that women's use of hormonal contraception may increase HIV risk. "I find the evidence far from persuasive," he writes.
More HIV/STD Transmission & Education Headlines: