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HIV/AIDS News You Can Use

May 15, 2001

Trailblazer Dawn Averitt

"No one with HIV should allow the virus to thwart their ambitions, to fog their future, to derail their dreams." This is the message that Dawn Averitt sought to convey over the course of her 2,167-mile odyssey along the Appalachian Trail -- because, as she says, "it is as effective an antidote to hopelessness and despair as the most powerful drug regimen available today." Averitt proves that HIV infection is no impediment to completing this country's oldest and most famous wilderness trail, read the story in HIV Newsline.

The Normalization of AIDS

AIDS has been normalized in the minds of gay men and in the absence of science, poz men are making their own rules about the risk of oral sex, the effects of substance abuse on viral replication, and the infectious degree of someone with no HIV viral activity. Mark King writes about some topics few of us seem to be discussing.

Sequencing Treatment Options

Dr. Daniel Berger writes about the importance of sequencing in treatment options in order to avoid resistance, in Positively Aware.

Overcoming the Pain

Father Jim, a gay, HIV positive priest in Tulsa, makes his point succinctly. "The people who survive are the ones who don't just sit and say, 'Oh I've got AIDS, come and feed me, come and take care of me.' They are the ones who get up and take care of each other. The joy of being able to do that sort of fills in the anguish of being sick." Jim Pickett writes in Positively Aware about collecting personal stories of people living with HIV and the people he's met.

Another Look at Starting Treatment

"There is no single approach to treating HIV infection that works for everyone and no 'best' first regimen. Complicated choices are par for the course in HIV infection. With new treatments on the way, these choices may get tougher -- but a knowledgeable HIV care provider who stays on top of current research can provide guidance to help you make choices that work for you." Anne Monroe examines which treatment to use when starting HIV medications, in CRIA Update.

Waiting to Start Treatment

Mark Milano has been waiting twenty years for the right time to start treatment. He felt vindicated when the latest federal guidelines said that waiting until CD4 counts drop below 350 is reasonable. Now he tells himself that if his CD4 count drops below 200 or his viral load goes above 50,000 he'll start treatment. Read this personal perspective on the newest federal HIV treatment guidelines, in CRIA Update.

Treatment Guidelines

What do the new HIV treatment guidelines mean for those already on therapy? Take a look at what Seattle Treatment Education Project had to say.

Women & HIV

HIV infection among U.S. women has increased significantly over the last decade, especially in communities of color. CDC estimates that, in the United States, between 120,000 and 160,000 adult and adolescent females are living with HIV infection, including those with AIDS. Read the report, from the Centers for Disease Control.

Empowering Women with HIV

Educate yourself on the disease! Women need to come together. Stop isolating ourselves. We are all dealing with similar issues. We need to take control of our lives." Positively Aware editor Charles Clifton interviews Earlene Hayden, an HIV-prevention specialist and outreach worker with South Side Help Center in Chicago who has been living with HIV for thirteen years.

Teens and Female-Controlled Barriers

A study in the January/February issue of Family Planning Perspectives examined the factors associated with the choice of choosing a female-controlled, over-the-counter, contraceptive barrier method to preventing sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and HIV. For the interesting results, click here.

Risky Sex and Substance Abuse

Continuity of care and continued monitoring of risky sexual behaviors are needed for substance abusing youth, as these risks persist long after treatment, emphasize authors of a recent article in the Journal of Adolescent Health.

OIs Still Seen in Good Responders

Troubling research results from Italian researchers. They noted that even in subjects with a "good" response to HAART, serious AIDS-related infections/cancers can occur.

Role for Kaletra

CRIA Update takes a look at the future role for kaletra.

Drinking & HAART

Researchers noted that subjects using highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) and who were also heavy alcohol drinkers were four times less likely to achieve a low viral load compared to subjects who were not heavy drinkers. Click here to read more.

Whey Protein

A small German study found that whey protein supplement boosted antioxidants in 30 HIV positive people by about 32%.

Hepatitis C Basics

A new basic fact sheet about hepatitis C is now available from New Mexico Infonet.

AIDS in India

"This time the genocide is not being committed by an evil lunatic, but by the very world we ourselves have created through our indifference, greed, and neglect. I increasingly feel ashamed to be living in such a world." Read this astonishingly moving missive from documentary filmmaker Robert Bilheimer who writes eloquently about AIDS in India. Bilheimer is making a film about the global impact of AIDS.

UN AIDS Session

Can't attend the June 2001 United Nations AIDS Session? Give your input via email; send your comments to: For more information, click here.

Global AIDS Action

World AIDS experts call for urgent action, say leaders must demonstrate financial and political commitment. For their statement, click here.

Africa Activism

AIDS activists internationally have organized a meeting in Africa for health ministers from developing countries, funders, and others; plus an interview with Paul Davis and Asia Russell from ACT UP Philadelphia, in AIDS Treatment News.

Advisory For Drugs Treating Fungal Infections

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today issued a Public Health Advisory to announce significant safety-related updates to the labeling of Sporanox® (itraconazole) products and Lamisil® (terbinafine hydrochloride) tablets. Sporanox® and Lamisil® are used to treat nail (onychomycosis), skin and other systemic fungal infections.

Clinical Trial Basics

Thinking of joining a clinical trial? Take a look at Community Research Initiative on AIDS comprehensive look at clinical trials.

Regional AIDS Staff Trainings

The National Minority Action Council will hold regional four-day comprehensive training for AIDS providers in eight cities across the nation. For the schedule, click here.

Web Highlights
A Selection of Top HIV/AIDS Stories from Across the Internet

Gay AIDS director: Bush 'gets it'
Evertz to Log Cabin: President is 'friend and decent human being'
From the Washington Blade (May 11, 2001)

Outliving my father: On a trip home to take care of his dying father, guest columnist King realizes that years of caring for friends dying of AIDS complications have prepared him for this very moment.
By Mark King
From The Advocate (May 7, 2001)

Is transmitted drug resistance in HIV on the rise? It seems so.
An editorial by Dr. Susan Little
From The British Medical Journal (May 5, 2001)

Antiretroviral Resistance Mutations
A collaborative effort of the International AIDS Society -- USA Resistance Testing Panel and HIV InSite, revised (April 2001)

National Cancer Institute HIV Drug Resistance Program
This program organizes and conducts research and symposia on HIV drug resistance

The Impact of HIV/AIDS on Food Security
From the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations (May 2001)

Annual Clinical Care of the Patient with HIV Infection
(You'll need real audio to listen to these speakers, topics include, HIV therapy for the experienced patient, HIV treatment I: how and when to start, toxicities of HIV treatment, etc.)
From The Johns Hopkins University Division of Infectious Diseases and AIDS Service (March 25, 2001)

8th CROI: Sensory Neuropathy in HIV/AIDS
From the Hopkins HIV Report (May 2001)

HPV-induced Anal Dysplasia
From the Hopkins HIV Report (May 2001)

HIV-Positive Women
Information for women living with HIV
From the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations

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