Positive Support Services in North Yorkshire and York
NYAA provides support for people in North Yorkshire and York who are living with or affected by HIV. From 1st July 2015, our support services will be delivered as part of our Partnership with York Teaching Hospital NHS under the recognised name YorSexualHealth.
On this website, you can find more information about who we are in the “About NYAA” section and what we do – what services we can provide – in the “Services” section. There is also an overview of information about HIV and HIV treatment in the “Information About HIV” section, with suggestions on where to find reliable, more detailed information. And there is also a “News” section, for news not only about NYAA, but also about things to do with HIV that might be of interest.
You can find our contact details here.
Topics on this page include the following: you can jump to them by clicking on the headings below:
HIV Transmission and Antiretroviral Therapy
Antiretroviral treatment (ART) greatly reduces the risk of transmitting HIV. Several very large studies have now shown that people with undetectable viral load do not pass on HIV to their sexual partners. However, there is still a possibility that HIV might be passed on during the period between starting treatment and viral load becoming detectable, which may take up to six months, or if viral load rebounds due to treatment failure.
A lot of people with HIV see the reduction of infectiousness and relief from anxiety about transmission as very important benefits of HIV treatment.
If you want to stop using condoms, it is important to discuss this carefully with your partners and ensure they are also comfortable with the decision. Discussing what an undetectable viral load means with HIV-negative partners may help reduce their anxiety about HIV transmission. But this information will probably be new to most people who do not have HIV; it may take time for someone to understand and trust what you are saying.
Knowing how HIV treatment can reduce the risk of passing on the virus may be especially useful for people wishing to have a child. Couples in which one person has HIV and the other does not may consider having unprotected sex on days when the woman is ovulating and at her most fertile.
It is important to remember that while HIV treatment will protect your partners from your HIV, it does not protect them or you from other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Also, in some countries, condomless sex without disclosing your HIV status is a criminal offence, regardless of the likelihood of HIV transmission.
The full article can be read here.
Unpleasant Sexually Transmitted Disease: Shigellosis
Shigellosis is a nasty infection which can be passed on during sex and to which HIV-positive gay men are especially vulnerable. It is a bacterial infection that can cause severe dysentery. Historically, cases in the UK have been associated with travel to low-income countries with poor hygiene. It is highly infectious and has very unpleasant symptoms, including fever, severe bloody diarrhoea and abdominal cramps. But in recent years there have been more cases of shigellosis in people who have not recently been abroad than in people who have probably acquired it during travel. Moreover one third of people with shigellosis and no recent foreign travel are HIV-positive gay men. Many of the men who have had shigellosis infection have had large numbers of sexual partners and were involved in the chemsex scene.
Shigellosis can cause stomach pain and watery diarrhoea. More serious cases can involve severe diarrhoea, which can contain blood or mucus, stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting and a fever.
If you have these kind of gastrointestinal problems and you could have acquired an infection during sex, make sure you are seen by a doctor who is familiar with shigellosis. The doctor also needs to know about your sexual practices – otherwise they may not check for shigellosis. Doctors in sexual health and HIV clinics are more likely to be aware of this infection being sexually transmitted than GPs.
The full article can be read here.
For more information on this topic, read NAM’s factsheet Shigellosis.
Easter Get-together 2016
NYAA held an Easter get-together at its offices in York. We were lucky to have a wonderfully sunny (if somewhat chilly!) day for it, and there was a good turnout of staff, friends and acquaintances. It was a great chance to meet and catch up over tea and cakes…or hot BBQ sausage buns for those who preferred a savoury snack!
Drop-ins will be held for coffee, cakes and catch-up over the next few months, not only in york, but also in Harogate and Scarborough. Please contact the offce for more details.