Daphne Joseph, a registered nurse with more than two decades experience dealing with AIDS and other STIs, discusses the primary risk groups, with a focus on risks among women over age 50.
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Well in the beginning of HIV epidemic, it was mostly male to male transmission of a virus. So it was mostly considered a homosexual disease. In HIV we're seeing normal heterosexual woman infected and we're seeing an older population, people over fifty having them diagnosed with HIV, and other STDs too but HIV is mainly what I deal with. And I think we're seeing a younger population that is infected. I am not quite sure, what's going on there? Don't know if its exposure of, things are more open there, you know, kids, you can view anything just about two or two, sexual content on the television or on the internet. Maybe there is more exposure early. But we're seeing younger and younger people infected with HIV and also with other STDs. Well I think especially in women, over-aged 50, most of them have gone through menopause, so they don't have to worry about pregnancy anymore. So they don't really think about needing to use condoms. You know, they're older; they don't have to worry about having a baby. But they need to realize that they need to have safe-sex. If this is a new partner, they need to make sure that they know that that partner has been tested or not. And especially with older women as we age, you have Drying Vaginal fault and easier for tears to occur in that area and that's how HIV is transmitted heterosexually usually because of the vaginal area is not as -- as moist as it used to be and so there is more chance of a tear, there is an opening in your skin and the semen contains HIV, the ejaculate of the man contains the HIV, the same HIV that's in the blood is also in the semen of man and vaginal fluids of women. So you're a older woman, you know, you don't have as much -- the vaginal area is dryer, so its easier to tear and it's a great transmission with the act of sex if its not protected, if the penis is not protected with a condom, to transmit their virus directly into the women's blood stream. And that's how they'll end up being HIV positive.
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