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March 10, 2004
In This Update:
  • HIV/HAART-Related Complications
  • HIV Treatment & Maintaining Your Health
  • Mental Health & HIV
  • U.S. AIDS Policy & Activism
  • HIV Prevention
  • HIV Outside the U.S.
  • Web Highlights

    Facial Wasting Treatment Tales From People With HIV
    At the moment, few (if any) reliable treatment options exist for HIV-positive people with facial wasting, and what works for some people may not work for others. In this article from AIDS Survival Project, a few HIVers talk about some of the treatments they've tried.

    Overview of HIV/Hepatitis C Coinfection in U.S.
    Chronic infection with hepatitis C has become a major concern for people living with HIV. In the United States, over 200,000 HIV-positive people -- an estimated 25% -- also have hepatitis C. Here's a review of what we know to date, from Positively Aware.



    Jim and the Gym: An Unexpected Love Story
    "I used to find enormous pleasure making fun of these body-obsessed queers. ... I felt sorry, pity really, for the hordes addicted to the Pec Decks and Stairmistresses and all the other devices of narcissistic torture that swelled one's titty titty bang bangs and emptied their heads of reason." Jim Pickett no longer feels this way. Now he writes about the joys of working out.

    Exercise Does a Heart (and Soul) Good
    Feel good after you exercise? It's a scientific fact that exercise will improve your psychological well being. Now a small study by German investigators suggests that, for HIV-positive people in particular, exercise can significantly improve heart and lung fitness, as well as health-related quality of life.

    For more on the benefits of exercise for people with HIV, browse through The Body's collection of articles.



    Don't Underestimate the Power of a Support Group
    Can support groups really make a difference for people with HIV? You'd better believe it: In this article, social worker Mary Lynn Hemphill explains why HIV support groups have significant social, educational and medical benefits.

    Looking for an HIV support group in your area? Start by visiting The Body's comprehensive listing of international and domestic AIDS hotlines and organizations.

    Depression & HIV: How It Happens, and What You Can Do About It
    Depression is extremely common among people with HIV, yet it receives only a tiny amount of attention from most healthcare providers and researchers. This detailed overview provides a wealth of information on depression and HIV, including risk factors, methods of diagnosis and options for treatment.



    California ADAP Avoids Waiting List; Inclusive Program Saves Money, Officials Say
    A California Senate subcommittee has rejected a proposal from Gov. Arnold Shwarzenegger to cap enrollment and create a waiting list for the state's AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP). The subcommittee chair said that limiting the number of people on ADAP would only cost the state more money in the long run, when people who were denied medications eventually became hospitalized due to AIDS-related health problems.

    Tax Relief Available for AIDS Organization Volunteers
    Did you know that you can save money on your taxes by volunteering at an AIDS organization? The federal government allows you to deduct most of the costs associated with your volunteer work, including transportation, gas, parking, phone calls and used stationery. Read through this list from AIDS Survival Project for more details.



    North Carolina College HIV Outbreak: The Story Behind the Story
    HIV briefly made national headlines in the U.S. last month, when newspapers broke the story that the first HIV outbreak among college students had been discovered while it was still in the process of spreading. As The Body reports, however, the real story is not in the findings themselves; rather, it's in the one-of-a-kind screening system that allowed researchers to make those findings -- a system that is slated to pass into oblivion later this year.

    New York Task Force to Tackle Crystal Meth, HIV Link
    Gay Men's Health Crisis in New York City will formally launch a task force to create a strategic response to the connection between crystal meth use, syphilis and increasing HIV infection rates among gay men.



    HIV Spreads to General Population in Former Soviet Union; U.S. Military Concerned
    New evidence suggests that in the Former Soviet Union, home to the fastest growing HIV epidemic in the world, HIV is now spreading from intravenous drug users into the general population. As The Body reports, the U.S. military is worried that this exploding HIV epidemic could put American soldiers in the area at greater risk for infection.

    On International Women's Day, Focus Turns to HIV
    International Women's Day was Monday, March 8; this year the focus was on the growing HIV/AIDS epidemic among women. UNAIDS Deputy Executive Director Kathleen Cravero said that women and girls are the "weakest link" in the global fight against HIV/AIDS because of their "less-advantaged economic and cultural position in the society."

    South Africa: Sharp Rise in Deaths Attributed to AIDS, But President in Denial
    An increase of almost 50 percent in South Africa's adult death rate over the past six years is likely due primarily to AIDS, researchers from South Africa's independent Medical Research Council have announced. However, South African President Thabo Mbeki, who still denies the extent of the epidemic, said South Africa had few reliable statistics on AIDS deaths and could not assess the actual extent of the epidemic.



    Crystal-Meth Use Is About to Race Out of Control
    A study has found that New York City men who have sex with men who use crystal meth are three times more likely to contract HIV via receptive anal intercourse.
    Op-ed article from Newsday, March 9, 2004

    Duel to the Death Inside HIV-Infected Cells
    Researchers have found that one of HIV's nine genes -- the "virion infectivity factor" -- may be one of the keys to a whole new type of HIV treatment.
    Article from The Washington Post, March 7, 2004 (free registration required)

    Surviving AIDS, but Still at Risk
    As most people with HIV know, antiretrovirals may prolong life, but they also carry their own dangers.
    Article from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, March 7, 2004

    Federal AIDS Funding Cuts "Devastating"
    San Francisco sees its Ryan White funding slashed by 12%; many other Bay Area HIV/AIDS treatment programs will be hit hard as well.
    Article from the San Francisco Chronicle, March 4, 2004

    From Punk Rock and Drugs to the War on HIV
    A profile of Allan Clear, the man behind New York's needle exchange efforts.
    Article from The New York Times, March 3, 2004 (free registration required)

    "It's OK, I'm on the AIDS Pill"
    A trio of international studies are now investigating whether tenofovir (Viread) can be used as a "morning-after" pill to prevent HIV infection. But if it's found to work, could it cause more problems than it solves?
    Article from Wired News, February 26, 2004

    Image from the July 2002 Visual AIDS Web Gallery
    Anatomical Garden, 1990;
    Robert Flack
    Visit Visual AIDS at The Body to view this month's Web Gallery, or to browse through Web Galleries from the past five years!

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    A restricted educational grant from Boehringer Ingelheim has helped make this week's e-mail update possible.

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