Higher HIV Risk During Pregnancy – For Men As Well As Women

Pregnant women are considered immune compromised; in general they are more prone to infections and their immune system does not work as efficiently as at other times. This could be due to the fact that there are major changes ongoing in the body as well as the fact that a pregnant woman’s bodily resources are concentrated on nurturing new life.

pregnant womanSo it is that women are more susceptible to HIV during their pregnancy. This is a well known fact that pregnant women are more likely to contract HIV during intercourse with an HIV positive partner.

However, research now tells us that men are even more at risk of contracting HIV if they have sexual intercourse with a pregnancy HIV + woman. This was found in a study conducted at University of Nairobi and Kenyatta National Hospital in Nairobi by Dr Nelly Mugo and her colleagues.

The study found that for women, it was sexual behavior that was an important aspect to explain this raised risk.

For men however it was found that the risk was even greater and this was put down to the fact of physiological changes to the vagina during pregnancy and perhaps to immunological changes as well. However it is thought that more research on this subject is still needed to be carried out.



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