Tag Archives: HIV

If I Have HIV, Can I Still Get Into Drug Rehab?

Almost everybody who struggles with substance abuse has other underlying issues that need to be addressed. Sometimes these are emotional problems that drive people to experiment with drugs and alcohol, and in other situations there are physical issues at play. Any successful drug treatment program needs to address all of the issues that affect a person’s health, and that includes HIV and AIDS.

Even though HIV is often thought of as a sexually transmitted infection, it often goes hand-in-hand with drug abuse. This is why it is not uncommon for someone with a substance abuse problem to be HIV-positive. It can also make treatment more complicated for a number of reasons. First of all, HIV and AIDS obviously compromises a person’s health and immune system, which can make any kind of medical treatment that much more difficult. Many people who are addicted to drugs and alcohol are also much less likely to remain compliant with other medications that they need to take to be healthy. For someone living with HIV or AIDS, that can be deadly.

Of course, there’s also the stigma surrounding HIV and AIDS. It’s not nearly as severe as it once was when the AIDS epidemic was at its worst, but it’s still there, and it can make one hesitant to seek treatment for their substance abuse problems. While it’s totally understandable why you would keep quiet about being HIV-positive, you can still seek treatment at a drug rehab center. It’s still an important step that you need to take to be healthy and reclaim your life, but you shouuld seek out a program that is geared toward those who are living with HIV or AIDS. Fortunately, programs such as these are more common than you might think; all you need to do is seek them out.

If you live with both HIV and drug addiction, there is always help available to you. We at Genesis House have safe and nurturing drug rehabilitation programs available for anybody who wants to be free of their addictions. Visit us online to learn more about our many treatment programs and how they can help you. If you need immediate help for yourself or a loved one, don’t hesitate to call us at 800-737-0933. No matter who you are, always remember that there is help available to you, even when things seem hopeless.

CDC Warns of Spread of Disease Through IV Drug Use

jaidscoverSubstance abuse can make people do things to themselves and others that they would never consider if they were sober. The grip of addiction is itself a harmful and deadly practice, and there are various aspects of it that make users more vulnerable to different kinds of health problems in addition to the damage from the drugs themselves.

One of the most devastating results is the spread of infectious diseases through the use of injecting drugs and sharing needles. While most people might assume that heroin is the only drug that is used intravenously, other drugs fit into this category as well, such as methamphetamine and cocaine.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently issued a report about the 220 counties in the United States that are most at risk to an increase of HIV and hepatitis C outbreaks from needle-sharing drug users. The results of this report appear in the June edition of the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes.

Of the counties named, more than half of them are in Kentucky, Tennessee and West Virginia, where rural areas have been hit heavily by IV drug use of opioids.

“Our main goal was to prevent this from happening again, and this is one way we think we can help jurisdictions,” study author John Brooks, Senior Medical Advisor for the CDC’s Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, told the Wall Street Journal.

Officials in the areas most at risk are working to provide more prevention programs, testing centers and other forms of assistance. While these might help a little bit, the most beneficial help would be to provide more treatment beds for addicts so they stop using drugs altogether. Recovery is the best prevention of this form of outbreak.

If you have a loved one addiction to drugs, whether they are using them intravenously or not, contact us today to find out how we can help.

New Research into Cocaine and Liver Disease

cocaine userResearchers and scientists have made huge advances in the treatment of HIV. At one point, patients who were diagnosed with the virus were almost guaranteed a painful, imminent death. However, the medication and knowledge available to health care providers allows for most HIV patients to live a relatively normal life. Although, this is not the case for HIV patients who also have a history of drug abuse or continue to use drugs. A new study is being conducted in South Florida to examine the relationship between cocaine use and liver disease among HIV patients.

Drug use and Hepatitis C are often linked because one of the most likely ways to contract the disease is by using needles. HIV users who abuse drugs like cocaine and also use needles and develop Hepatitis C need more specialized care, as their ability to fight off any other disease or illness is diminished.

“Liver disease is known to shorten the lives of people with HIV. With 35 million people around the world with HIV – and a large number of them regular drug users – this research is focused on determining how to help them more effectively,” explained Marianna K. Baum, the researcher that is heading the study. She stressed that it is difficult to treat HIV patients that have an addiction to cocaine because it makes them more resistant to medication and they are less likely to follow a medication and therapy regimen.

The idea to look into more effective treatments for these patients came after Baum realized that some of her patients had slower disease progression when they took over the counter vitamins. She decided that this link may provide better solutions for those who are struggling with the virus and liver disease.

The research is being conducted at the Florida International University Robert Stempel College of Public Health and Social Work. Researchers will use data from the Miami Adult Studies on HIV. The team will focus on populations that are often left out of HIV studies to help get more inclusive results.