The AIDS causing Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a friend of nobody, or at least it seems to be. HIV kills millions of people globally and although a lot of medical advancement has been made to control its severity, there is still the question of living a long life with AIDS. Studies have revealed that the life expectancy of AIDS patients is determined by several factors.
As the old adage goes, prevention is better than cure, but when the disease is already in the system, cure efforts becomes inevitable and where solid cure cannot be attained as is the case of AIDS presently, control makes sense. Technological breakthrough in medical research continues to provide hope to AIDS patients and many can now enjoy lengthy life just like any other person. So what are the factors that affect the lifespan of AIDS victims?
Patients who have been put in AIDS treatment regime through antiretroviral drugs usually have higher life expectancy than their counterparts who are out of treatment. Some patients take several medications and can thus have improved lifespan. It has been noted that AIDS patients in developed nations have high life expectancy of up to several decades than those in developing nations whose life can fade away in just under a year.
It is advised that for AIDS victims to be able to enjoy extended lifespan, they should join proper treatment soon after diagnosis. While antiretroviral medication does not undo the infection already in the body, the drug does frustrate the progress of the disease. It means that the level of the virus already in the body can be bound from multiplying when antiretroviral is administered to the patient.
The lifespan of AIDS victims can also be extended by preventing opportunistic infections. Cumulatively, the body gives up much of its defense against infection when HIV invades and this puts the body at risk of multiple infections. The common opportunistic infections that should be kept at bay include TB, pneumonia, taxoplasmosis and many others. If these opportunistic infections are not properly controlled, they can eventually claim the life of the patient ahead of AIDS itself.
It therefore means that while antiretroviral medication is being administered to the patient, care should be taken to prevent multiple infections. The patient should also be put in proper diet to supplement antiretroviral medication. Proper diet also helps to forestall development of nutrition related opportunistic infections.
Health experts also recommend alcohol and tobacco free life for AIDS victims. These substances lead to undesired effects on the body and can cause the body to become frail under the weight of HIV. Life expectancy in AIDS victims can also be boosted through exercise and healthy eating.
It has been noted that victims in their 20s have the advantage of age which allows them to enjoy higher life expectancy the victims who have advanced in age. The ability to living a long life with HIV infection in young victims is due to the fact they the body possesses strong defense against diseases at young age. However, as years go by, the body grows weaker and therefore prone to a lot of opportunistic infections.