Tag Archive | "immune system"

Transplant Patient Gets AIDS from Donor’s Kidney

A transplant patient was infected with Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome or AIDS after he had received a new kidney from a living donor. This is the first case documented in the United States ever since HIV screenings were employed in the mid-1980s.

It was identified that the donor had an unprotected sex within the 11 weeks span from when he tested negative to the time the surgery was performed in 2009.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggested that organ donors should repeat screening tests for HIV one week prior to surgery, based on the report on the New York case on Thursday.

Dr. Colin Shepard of the New York City Health Department said that the HIV test must be performed as close as possible to the scheduled date of transplant.

The CDC also reminded future organ donors to refrain any behavior that could raise their risks of infection.

Health officials only released a few details about the recipient and the donor because of laws pertaining to patient confidentiality. The relationship of the recipient and the donor, as well as the hospital where the surgery was performed was also kept confidential. The only detail they released is that the case happened in New York City.

According to the report from CDC, the donor and the recipient did not know they had HIV until almost a year after the surgery. But, the recipient’s HIV developed into AIDS most likely because the patient was taking drugs that are used to suppress the immune system in order to avoid organ rejection, the health officials said.

Today, both the donor and recipient are receiving treatments for HIV. However, their conditions were not revealed in the report.

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Certain Child Hearing Loss Associated to Virus during Pregnancy

Some hearing loss in children may be caused by a virus that mothers contract while they are still pregnant, a new study stated.

In children that have a certain degree of hearing loss, 9 percent of them had acquired cytomegalovirus or CMV during birth. This report is stated in a new study in the Archives of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.

Cytomegalovirus is a common virus that causes harmless infection. However, people with weak immune system can get sick from it. Infections can be prevented if one does proper hand washing, especially if dealing with sick people, as well as toddlers who oftentimes carry the disease.

Mothers who had contracted the disease before pregnancy have relatively small risks to pass it on their children. However, mothers who have acquired the disease during pregnancy have higher chances according to the study; but, it is still quite improbable that their children will get the CMV-related hearing problem.

An average of 1,000 children experiences some severe kind of hearing loss. This means they can not hear usual conversations. This is according to the American Speech Language Hearing Association. In fact, they said that half of the cases are often hereditary.

Nearly 25% of women acquire CMV when they are pregnant, during the time it is very dangerous for the baby. CMV is also associated with some developmental issues in children such as mental retardation, as well as cerebral palsy. But, hearing loss is the most common problem.

The study examined 354 children who were tested for CMV at birth. The kids were around 4 years and older. All of them had hearing loss, but 34 of them had experienced CMV through their mothers.

Researchers do not know the reason why exposure to CMV in utero can cause hearing problems in children later, but the virus might be doing some kind of damage, said Karen Flower, who studies childhood infections at the University of Alabama in Birmingham.

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