Doctors Strongly Recommend That All Pregnant Women To Have A Blood Test For HIV – Part 1 of 3
Doctors Strongly Recommend That All Pregnant Women To Have A Blood Test For HIV. A child born two-and-a-half years ago in Mississippi with HIV is the triumph case of a so-called “functional cure” of the infection, researchers announced Sunday. Standard tests can no longer detect any traces of the AIDS-causing virus even though the child has discontinued HIV medication. “We find credible this is the first well-documented case of a functional cure,” said study lead author Dr Deborah Persaud, associate professor of pediatrics in the line of infectious diseases at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center in Baltimore. The finding was presented Sunday at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections, in Atlanta.
The child was not part of a study but, instead, the beneficiary of an unexpected and partly unplanned order of events that – once confirmed and replicated in a formal study – might help more children who are born with HIV or who at risk of contracting HIV from their progenitrix eradicate the virus from their body. Normally, mothers infected with HIV take antiretroviral drugs that can almost eliminate the odds of the virus being transferred to the baby. If a mother doesn’t recall her HIV status or hasn’t been treated for other reasons, the baby is given “prophylactic” drugs at birth while awaiting the results of tests to determine his or her HIV status.
This can take four to six weeks to complete. If the tests are positive, the babe starts HIV drug treatment. The mother of the baby born in Mississippi didn’t know she was HIV-positive until the time of delivery.
But in this case, both the endorse and confirmatory tests on the baby were able to be completed within one day, allowing the baby to be started on HIV drug treatment within the first 30 hours of life. “Most of our kids don’t get picked up that early”. As expected, the baby’s “viral load” – detectable levels of HIV – decreased progressively until it was no longer detectable at 29 days of age.