HIV Among People Aged 55 And Over
In the past, when people started having insight about the HIV epidemic 30 years ago, all those who were diagnosed with it could stay at most two years with it. What does this mean? Aging issues were not such a significant focus on those who had already contracted it.
Things have, however, changed, and we should be thankful for improvements in the effectiveness of cure with the invented HIV medicine popularly known as antiretroviral therapy. Those who are diagnosed early and make a step to stay on this medication have the opportunity to keep suppressing the virus and live a long healthy life.
With all these said, nearly half of the world people diagnosed with this epidemic are aged 55 years and over. Most of those with it have stayed with the virus for quite some time; others contract the disease at that old age. According to different studies conducted by disease control and
prevention centers, people of the age of 55 and over account for 17% of the newly diagnosed individuals all over the world.
The complications usually associated with aging
News that is all over trending these days is that people diagnosed with this deadly disease can live healthier and longer lives if they abide by the treatment in place. This treatment helps in achieving and keeps suppressing the viral load.
But then, individuals living for an extended period with the HIV infection under this longer life expectancy tend to exhibit different clinical characteristics that are usually observed with the aging conditions. Such conditions are like changes in cognitive and physical abilities, multiple chronic conditions and diseases, increase stressors vulnerability, and also the use of various medications.
As we have seen, people aged 55 and over with this virus are prone to develop more chronic illnesses. Management of these conditions requires geriatric care principles at large. There is a need to put focus on regular functions, quality of life, and independence.