The percentage of HIV transmission from mother to child can be prevented in anumber of ways. I. The AZT treatment is one way to prevent HIV. A. AZT is a drugthat decreases mother to child transmission of HIV.
B. AZT is given to the HIVpositive mother throughout her pregnancy. II. HIV can be contracted throughbreast-feeding.
A. There is a 14% chance of transmission of HIV from mother tochild through breast-feeding. B. There are alternatives to breast-feeding, suchas formula and a milk bank. 1.
Alternatives to breast-feeding have their badsides. 2. Breast-feeding can be made safer. III. HIV testing in pregnant womencan lower HIV transmission from mother to child. A.
HIV testing in pregnantwomen is a good idea. 1. Mother who knows their HIV status can make informedchoices about their pregnancy. 2. Voluntary HIV testing in pregnant women has avery low success rate.
3. Women are scared of the test results. 4. Prenatal HIVtesting is less costly than treating the mother and the child for HIV. B.
Mandatory testing for HIV in pregnant women also has its down sides. 1. Womencould be scared away from the health care system. 2. Tests may not beconfidential.
Preventing HIV Transmission from Mother to Child “In 1993,approximately 7,000 HIV-infected women gave birth in the United States. Of thosenewborns, 1,000 to 2,000 are infected with HIV-now the seventh leading cause ofdeath in children aged 1 to 4” (Gordon and Hooker). HIV in children isbecoming more and more widespread and there is still no cure for it. The mostcommon way children contract HIV is through their mother. The percentage of HIVtransmission from mother to child can be prevented in a number of ways. One ofthe ways HIV transmission from mother to child can be prevented is through AZTtreatment.
AZT is a drug that is given to HIV positive mothers, which candecrease mother to child transmission by 67. 5 percent (Gordon and Hooker). Themother is given five doses of AZT a day for the last six months of her pregnancyand then four doses during labor and an AZT syrup is given to the newborn forsix weeks after birth (Gordon and Hooker). AZT is the only drug approved forpreventing HIV transmission from mother to child (“Women and HIV” 10).
Mothers choosing to not breast-feed their children can also prevent HIVtransmission. The chance that a newborn can contract HIV from their mothersbreast milk is up to 14 percent (Kent). “In October 1995 the U. S. Food andDrug Administrations FDA consumer magazine said ” Women who are HIVpositive should not breast-feed” (Kent). Even though the percentage ofmother to child transmission through breast milk is low, there is still thatsmall chance and any chance that a child could contract HIV is too much.
Thereare alternatives to breast-feeding such as formula or using breast milk from amilk bank (Kent). Though these alternatives are better than taking the chance oftransmitting HIV to a child, they too have their bad sides. The use of formula,for example, poses a risk of the newborn getting diarrhea and other lifethreatening diseases (Kent). Breast milk can be heated to lessen the chances ofthe child contracting HIV, but there is still that small yet deadly chance.
HIVtesting in pregnant women could also help stop the transmission of HIV frommother to child. With a mothers knowledge of HIV status she could be counseledappropriately so she could choose whether of not to go on with the pregnancy,fully aware of the risks HIV could pose on her child (Gostin 65). If a mother isunaware that she has HIV the baby is denied the opportunity to get treatment. ” Its killing kids who dont have to die” (Gordon and Hooker).
At thistime HIV testing in pregnant women is voluntary and has a very low success rate. Women wont take the HIV test because they refuse to believe that they are atrisk and they are scared of the results (Gordon and Hooker). Making HIV testingmandatory in pregnant women could save a lot of childrens lives. Most HIVinfected children dont make it to the age of 4 and the rest will fdie beforetheir teens (Gordon and Hooker). Mandatory HIV testing and AZT treatment is alsoless costly for the Health Care System then treating a mother and her child forHIV for the .