HIV / AIDS
The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a global pandemic and the fourth biggest killer worldwide. HIV is an incurable sexually transmitted infection that can be passed during unprotected anal, vaginal and also oral sex, via blood, semen, vaginal fluids and even breast milk. It can also be transmitted by sharing dirty needles, which places intravenous drug users at risk. Although gay men who engage in unprotected sex are a high risk group, anyone who fails to practice safe sex risks infection. A blood test (usually taken 1-3 months after the risk of infection has been identified) can detect the presence of the virus, which attacks the body’s immune system and leaves those infected susceptible to life-threatening conditions (AIDS is the latter stages of HIV when the immune system has stopped working). If you contract HIV, then counselling, regular blood tests, and a daily cocktail of drugs, which work to slow the progress of the virus and effectively manage the condition, will unfortunately become a way of life.
To find out more about HIV & AIDS there are numerous support groups:
Comments and Questions
Comments & Questions are now archived, but if you see anything on the site that worries you, please report it and one of our moderators will look at it as soon as possible.
Please note: Unfortunately Channel 4 cannot respond to individual inquiries. If you have any concerns, you can check out NHS Choices, but ultimately it is always best to check with a health professional.
The information provided on this website (including any NHS Choices medical information) is for use as information or for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical care by a qualified doctor or other qualified healthcare professional. We do not warrant that any information included within this site will meet your health or medical requirements. This Embarrassing Bodies site does not provide any medical or diagnostic services so you should always check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.