Friday, 21 December 2012

ART in HIV Positive

Extending the Family with ART in HIV Positive

ART stands for assisted reproductive technologies and it can be used by the duos who are HIV discordant couples. HIV discordant couples are those in which the male is HIV positive and female is HIV negative. One of the technologies which can be used in ART is IVF. The main concern of ART is the safety and risk to the offspring of such a couple. It aims at maximizing the safety for the newborn. Today even the people who are infected with HIV are living longer and experiencing improved health than in previous times. There are so many advancements in the treatments, which could let the person suffering from HIV live longer.

In addition, there are so many techniques, which may lead to a reduction in the risk of transmission of the disease. One of such process is sperm washing. Usually, heterosexual transmission of the virus is very low but a risk always is there. So, to be sure the person who is suffering from it must take care and go through the treatment processes. The technique sperm washing is used to remove all that which is contained in the sperm nut actual material which is used to get the women pregnant. Until now about 300 children have been born using this technique. Sperm washing technique is offered by various centers in Italy and Spain. Extending the family with ART in HIV positive has been improved through many procedures. It is considered that the child may be born uninfected but the health, safety and welfare of the child may be compromised.

Therefore, it is a much-needed concern about giving ART to HIV discordant couple. It has been published many times that the child born to any HIV infected parent is less likely to have a normal and healthy life. The risk of transfer of virus is minimized when the parents undergo this treatment. HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus and it is the reason behind AIDS which stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. It creates the conditions in which the immune system of the infected person is suffering from failure and it allows all types of life threatening viruses to attack the body of infected. The cost required for the procedures also seems to be reasonable. HIV has many classifications further and it requires immediate treatment in order to live longer is infected. IVF stands for in vitro fertilization and it is a process in which the egg is fertilized by the sperm. It is the major treatment technique where many other methods included in the ART technique have failed. The risk of transmission of the virus can be minimized by employing well trained staff and well equipped laboratory to be used. The sperm washing technique is very expensive but when the service is considered, the cost seems to be reasonable. The techniques are expected to produce more benefits than harm to the people involved in the process. Access can be denied in certain situation where the necessary conditions are not met by the people. There are many questions which arise when it comes to the delivering the ART services by a health care professional as follows:

  • Do the health care professionals have an obligation in providing the ART techniques to required people?
  • If the health care professional denies the access to such methods and uninfected partner or the child becomes infectious through unprotected sex, then who would be held responsible for that.
  • Is the method in ART is legal or not. And if not what would be the problems that the people involved in it may have to suffer.
  • Can the methods described in ART can be justified on medical and non-medical grounds.

The cost is usually in factor in such methods but it must not be a limitation on providing harmless treatment and a long living chance. The cost must not be the reason of denied or restricted access for the people who are in need. Some may also think that it is unethical to perform such activities and giving birth to children through such methods. But it is a process which helps to save many lives by not letting the virus transmits to the uninfected people. These methods must not be available on the basis of race or caste because that would be discrimination. It must be available universally. According to a survey in many centers in the United States of America, almost all the clinics do not provide all the necessary and relevant information to their clients and offers limited access which is not sufficient. Some of the clinics do not even treat people who have a bad history like events of child abuse or excessive alcohol consumption. Couples would definitely want to have kids and if that desire is to have natural children it needs no justifications. But if they are not healthy enough to participate in natural process, they must be denied the access to such a method which would provide them a chance to become parents. There are many reasons which encourage the desire of having a child which are as follows:

  • Liking for children and a desire to have them.
  • Pressure from older baby to have younger ones.
  • To provide a brother or sister to older children.
  • To avoid having an only child
  • To replace the child who has died and to fill the incompleteness in the family
  • Desire to have a child of each sex
  • Having children without any reasons

There are no certain aspects on which it can be measured that who can be a good parent. And it seems unjustified to access it when we have techniques using which every parent can be a good parent. The risk of transmitting the virus to an uninfected partner or a child has been the major concern. This leads to the belief of some people that HIV positive people must not have children but they may not know about ART or IVF techniques.


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