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NCJ Number: 157968 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Alcohol and AIDS
Corporate Author: US Dept of Health and Human Services
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
United States of America
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 4
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
US Dept of Health and Human Services
Rockville, MD 20892-9304
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

US Dept of Health and Human Services
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
5635 Fishers Lane, MSC 9304
Rockville, MD 20892-9304
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Type: Literature Review
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: There are two reasons to investigate connections between alcohol abuse, HIV infection, and AIDS: alcohol may adversely affect the immune system, and alcohol may influence high-risk sexual behavior.
Abstract: The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is the agent that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). HIV is transmitted through sexual contact with an infected individual, through exchange of infected blood or blood products, or to a newborn from an infected mother. Eventually, HIV destroys the body's immune system, mainly by impairing a class of white blood cells whose regulatory activities are essential for immune protection. Alcohol in the body can impair normal immune responses that protect the body from disease. Chronic alcohol consumption has been shown to reduce the number of infection- fighting white blood cells in laboratory animals and in humans. These effects could mean that drinking may increase vulnerability to HIV infection among people exposed to the virus and that among people who are already HIV infected, alcohol-induced immunosuppression might add to HIV-induced immunosuppression and speed the onset or exacerbate the pathology of AIDS-related illness. Sexual practices considered to be high-risk for acquiring HIV from an infected individual include vaginal or anal intercourse without a condom; other sexual practices that facilitate exchange of blood, semen, or other body secretions; and unprotected sexual activities with multiple partners. Alcohol's relationship to high-risk sexual behavior may be explained in two ways. First, alcohol use may be a marker for a risk-taking temperament. Second, alcohol may influence high-risk behaviors at specific sexual encounters by affecting judgment and disinhibiting socially learned restraints. 36 references
Main Term(s): Drug effects
Index Term(s): AIDS/HIV prevention; Alcohol abuse; Alcohol abuse education
Note: From Alcohol Alert No. 15, January 1992.
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=157968

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