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History of sexually transmitted diseases & HIV/AIDS

This paper will look at the history of sexually transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS and their symptoms. Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) affect men and women of all socioeconomic levels and backgrounds (CDC, 2005). Despite the progress that has been made in the United States on prevention of STDs over the past four decades, the U.S. has the highest rate of STDs in the industrialized world - 50 to 100 times higher. An estimated 15.3 million new cases of STDs are reported each year in the U.S. This is because most people remain unaware of all but the most prominent of STDs - HIV/AIDS.

Syphilis is an STD transmitted by the bacterium Treponema pallidum (CDC, 2005). It is often referred to as "the great imitator" because many of its signs and symptoms resemble those of other diseases. Being infected with syphilis and cured does not mean a person cannot get it again. A sex partner may have syphilis sores hidden in the vagina, rectum or mouth, so they may not be obvious. In primary syphilis, there is usually a single sore (a chancre), but there may be many. The time between infection and the first symptom can be from 10 to 90 days, with an average of 21 days. The chancre is small, round, and painless, and usually heals spontaneously in three to six weeks. However, if treatment is not sought, it will progress to secondary syphilis.

In secondary syphilis, there is a skin rash and lesions of the mucous membranes, which usually starts with the development of a rash on one or more parts of the body. The rash may occur as the chancre is healing or several weeks later. The rash may appear as red or reddish brown spots on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet, but can appear on other parts of the body and resemble those of other diseases. The rashes are sometimes too faint to be noticed. Other symptoms of secondary syphilis include fever, swollen lymph glands, sore throat, patchy hair loss, headaches, weight loss, mus...

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History of sexually transmitted diseases & HIV/AIDS. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 17:37, October 01, 2020, from