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Voice: AIDS can be transmitted by kissing

April 16, 2001

In the Tuesday edition of your paper you ran an article by Dr. Donohue titled "Kissing not found to transmit AIDS." Dr. Donohue gave an excellent description of what happens to your body after you have contracted the disease. However, he did not indicate how you might become infected with the disease.

When you read the last paragraph of the article Dr. Donohue states, "Kissing rarely was the means of spreading the virus." This would indicate that the virus can be spread by kissing, a contradiction of the heading.

The Centers for Disease Control says the HIV virus, which is the forerunner to AIDS, can be transmitted by "any" body fluid, the most prominent being blood, but the disease can be transmitted by semen, urine, feces, sweat, vomit, mucus and yes, even saliva. Once you have been infected there is really no way to know exactly which of the above body fluids infected you.

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I bring this to your attention because I felt that the heading was misleading and once you have contracted this disease there is no cure. You are going to die and this is, of course, very serious. There is really no way to tell if someone has been infected with the disease by looking at the person. In the last stages they do seem to always lose a lot of weight.

You do not die of AIDS. After AIDS has destroyed your immune system you die of some other illness that your body no longer has the ability to fight off.

RAY NAUD

El Centro

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