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Syphilis Can Speed HIV's Progression

Syphilis Can Speed HIV's Progression

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Syphilis infection in HIV-positive men can cause bigger drops in CD4-cell counts and greater increases in viral loads, according to a study in the October 21 edition of the journal AIDS. More than half of 26 men studied who had detectable viral loads prior to syphilis infection experienced significant increases in viral levels after contracting the second sexually transmitted disease. Of 10 men with undetectable HIV pre-syphilis, two developed detectable virus after contracting syphilis. A mean drop of 62 CD4 cells also was reported among all the men after syphilis infection; successful treatment with antibiotics resulted in an average rebound of only 33 CD4 cells. Because syphilis coinfection seems to accelerate HIV disease progression, the researchers say integrated public-health campaigns are needed that address education and prevention for both diseases.

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Ryan is the Digital Director of The Advocate Channel, and a graduate of NYU Tisch's Department of Dramatic Writing. She is also a member of GALECA, the LGBTQ+ society of entertainment critics. While her specialties are television writing and comedy, Ryan is a young member of the LGBTQ+ community passionate about politics and advocating for all.

Ryan is the Digital Director of The Advocate Channel, and a graduate of NYU Tisch's Department of Dramatic Writing. She is also a member of GALECA, the LGBTQ+ society of entertainment critics. While her specialties are television writing and comedy, Ryan is a young member of the LGBTQ+ community passionate about politics and advocating for all.