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HIV/AIDS News You Can Use

October 8, 2003

Thousands of Health Workers Tell Congress: Stop Starving ADAP!

Front-line HIV healthcare providers have written more than 2,200 letters to the U.S. Congress expressing concern over the lack of appropriate funding to AIDS Drug Assistance Programs (ADAPs), which provide low-income Americans with AIDS drugs. But more help is needed: Tell your doctor to take action!

Finding Your Way Out of Depression

Depressed? There is something you can do about it! Many people living with HIV struggle with feelings of sadness, hopelessness and loneliness, but there are coping skills you can learn to get you through these difficult times. Here are some first steps.

New HPV Test Means Better Cancer Protection, Less-Frequent Testing

A new DNA test for human papillomavirus (HPV) gives women an earlier warning than the Pap test that they may harbor the virus that causes most cases of cervical cancer. Also, unlike the Pap test, the new DNA test only needs to be administered once every three years to women over 30.

Canada Poised to Take Huge Step on Generic Drugs

Canadian officials and representatives from the country's drug industry have given their support to a plan that would alter the country's pharmaceutical drug patent laws. The alteration would allow Canada to produce and export generic antiretroviral drugs to the developing world, and would make Canada the first member of the Group of Seven industrialized countries to do so.

Potential Treatment Fights HIV Through the Nose

A nasal spray for HIV treatment? It's not as outrageous as you might think: A small, preliminary study has found that a special protein, when sprayed into the nose, may help clear out HIV "reservoirs" that antiretrovirals can't reach on their own.

Ensuring Your Liver Stays Healthy

Keeping your liver healthy is extremely important. Most HIV drugs are processed through the liver, and hepatitis C is a liver disease, so if you have HIV and/or hepatitis C, you may be at a higher risk than other people of developing liver problems. Use this easy-to-read guide to keeping your liver in top shape, and make sure to get frequent checkups at your doctor's office or clinic!

HIV Prevention Grows in Cyberspace

A pair of Internet HIV prevention programs, PowerON and SexEd4U, work to reach people who use the Internet to meet anonymous sex partners. These unique -- yet easily copied -- programs have two major advantages over traditional HIV prevention efforts: one, they reach people who are at risk while they're looking for their online partners; and two, they let those people maintain their anonymity.

Meet Acyclovir, a Herpes Treatment

Acyclovir (brand name: Zovirax) is one of the drugs doctors prescribe to treat herpes and shingles, which sometimes strike people with HIV. Want to know more about how acyclovir works, and what side effects it may cause? Click here to find out.

Who Will Pay for Your Hepatitis C Treatment?

Been diagnosed with hepatitis C (HCV) and have no health insurance? If you live in the U.S., you may be able to get government support for your treatment. This overview from WISE Words provides information on the extent to which Medicaid, ADAP and other U.S. healthcare programs cover HCV treatment.

New Idea for Once-Daily Regimen Hits a Roadblock

Over the summer, researchers found that a novel once-daily combination of 3TC (lamivudine, Epivir), abacavir (Ziagen) and tenofovir (Viread) largely failed to work as an initial HAART regimen. In this article, one of the head investigators of that study examines what went wrong.

To see The Body's own analysis of this study, provided by Cal Cohen, M.D., click here.

Not Everyone Needs to Know Everything About HAART

Not everyone with HIV needs to -- or wants to -- learn everything there is to know about HIV meds, treatment educator James Learned explains. Treatment educators like him too often assume that everybody with HIV needs to be deluged with information about their treatment options, he says. Sometimes, the best thing a treatment educator can offer is moral support.

Diagnosing and Treating Genital Ulcer Disease

Genital ulcer disease (GUD) is difficult for doctors to diagnose, because it can be masked by the very sexually transmitted diseases that cause it. For more on GUD, its causes and its treatments, read this case study from HIV Education Prison Project.

Web Highlights

A Selection of the Top HIV/AIDS Stories From Across the Internet:

BrainPOP: Short, Animated HIV/AIDS Movies and Multimedia
Available online to help educate kids about HIV, but also great for teaching adults.
From BrainPOP (Regularly updated)

Nevirapine Causes Acute Hepatitis in 2.6% of HIV-Positive Patients Who Receive It Says Case Series
More documentation on the link between liver problems and nevirapine use.
From (October 7, 2003)

Genital Piercings Implicated in Oral Transmission of HIV, Say Australians
New warning flags are raised about the possible risks of penile piercings.
From (October 6, 2003)

HIV "Dodging Body's Defenses"
HIV disables a defensive system within the human body that would normally disrupt the virus' attempts to attack healthy cells, researchers say.
From BBC News (October 6, 2003)

Killer of Dreams
Columnist Nicholas Kristof talks about how a new generation of Africans is becoming infected with HIV, even as the generation that brought them into the world is dying from it.
From The New York Times (free registration required) (October 4, 2003)

Saudi Clinic "Dumps" AIDS Patient
Officials are investigating allegations that a clinic ejected a terminally ill AIDS patient into the street, leaving him barely conscious.
From BBC News (October 3, 2003)
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