1. Definition of "Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome" (AIDS).


    1. It is a condition that destroys a person's natural immunity against disease.

    2. It is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus HIV.

    3. The incubation period is from six months to many years.


  1. Groups that are at high risk for AIDS.


    1. Drug abusers.

    2. Hemophiliacs or other people requiring blood transfusions.

    3. Infants with infected mothers.

    4. Homosexuals.


  1. Early signs and symptoms of AIDS-related complex (ARC).(NOTE: in 19% of cases, persons with ARC symptoms develop AIDS.)


    1. Fever.

    2. Rash.

    3. Progressive weight loss.

    4. Swollen lymph glands.

    5. Fatigue.

    6. Cough.

    7. Diarrhea.

    8. Night sweats.


  1. Two common forms of AIDS.


    1. Form: Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia


      1. Cough.

      2. Fever.

      3. Difficulty breathing.

    1. Form: Kaposi's sarcoma


      1. Bluish-violet or brown, painless spots, which frequently begin on feet and progress upward.

      2. Pruritus.


  1. Measure to prevent AIDS.


    1. Avoid sex with multiple partners.

    2. Avoid use of intravenous drug abuse.

    3. Avoid sharing a needles or syringes.

    4. Use condoms correctly:

      1. Condoms should be made of latex rubber.

      2. Spermicide inside the tip and outside the condom provides extra protection.

      3. Condoms must be intact before and after use.

      4. Condoms must be removed correctly.

    1. Avoid pregnancy if HIV positive.


  1. Measures to manage AIDS.


    1. Monitor for signs and symptoms of infection (fever, chills, night sweats, lesions, diarrhea, etc.).

    2. Eat a well-balanced including nutritional supplements to maintain weight.

      1. (Refer to anorexia and nausea teaching guides.)

      2. (Provide "Daily Food Guide" handout.)

    1. Avoid alcohol.

    2. Maintain balance of rest and exercise.

    3. Avoid smoking. (Decreases resistance to respiratory infections.)

    4. Have regular medical check-ups.

    5. Obtain emotional support and counseling as needed.

    6. Avoid people with respiratory infections.


  1. Measures to prevent the spread of AIDS.


    1. Do not donate blood.

    2. Inform anyone involved in care such as physician, nurse, dentist, etc.

    3. Inform sex partners of diagnosis.

    4. Do not become pregnant if HIV positive.


  1. Home isolation techniques.


    1. Care givers should wear disposable latex gloves when in direct contact with body fluids and blood.

    2. Care givers should wear gloves when handling linen and clothing soiled with excretions and secretions. Items should be washed separately by soaking in bleach and then washing with hot, soapy water.

    3. Soiled disposable items, such as gloves, underpads, or dressings, should be double-wrapped in heavy duty plastic garbage bags.

    4. Dishes and eating utensils should be washed in hot, soapy water.

    5. Dry waste contaminated with blood or body fluids should be disposed of in a separate container.

    6. Any needles used for medication administration should be placed in an impermeable container.

    7. Care givers must wash hands meticulously before and after contact with the client.

    8. Food preparation areas and bathrooms should be cleaned with hot, soapy water, followed by a solution that is one part bleach to nine parts water.