Arizona State University College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Chicana and Chicano StudiesLatino Health Issues

Questions and Contact Information

Where did AIDS come from?
What does AIDS or HIV do to me?
How do I know I have AIDS or HIV?
How do they test and treat for HIV/ AIDS?

Questions to Ask your Doctor

  • What is HIV how is it different from AIDS?
  • How does HIV affect the immune system and how do I stay healthy?
  • Is it safe to hug and kiss someone?
  • Can I still have sex?
  • Should I get a flu shot every year to keep me from getting sick?
  • Do I have hepatitis?
  • Should I be vaccinated for hepatitis A or B to keep me from getting these viruses?
  • What is my viral load, and why do I want to keep it low?
  • What is my CD4 T-cell count, and why is it important?
  • When should I start taking meds for HIV?
  • How do HIV meds work?
  • What is drug resistance and how does HIV develop it?
  • What do genotype and phenotype tests tell me, and do I need them?
  • Do all HIV meds have side effects and how do I manage them?

Also ask your doctor for free copy of the brochure called HIV and Your Treatment .

Check out a clinic of AIDS service organization

To find a HIV clinic or AIDS service organization that will meet your needs, ask the following questions

  • Can you help with transportation to your clinic?
  • If I don't have insurance, can you help me apply to programs that will help pay for my appointments and HIV meds?
  • Do your staff speak the same language as I do?

Questions to ask your therapist or case manager

  • Should someone be with me when I tell my partner?
  • Should I ever tell my bossed or employer?
  • Are there any "confidentiality issues" I should know about?
  • Can you recommend a support group for HIV-positive women?
  • Who should I call when I need to talk to someone right away?
  • Will my health insurance pay for my HIV med's?
  • What can I do if I don't have health insurance?

Women -Questions for your Gynecologist/ OB

  • What does chronic HPV infection have to do with HIV?
  • Do condoms offer protection from HIV, hepatitis, and sexually transmitted diseases such as HPV and genital herpes?
  • When should I have a Pap smear, a pelvic and rectal exam, and mammogram?
  • How can I quit smoking?
  • If the symptoms for yeast and bacterial infections are the same, how do you tell the difference?
  • What does it mean if a yeast infection or herpes flare-up lasts more than a month?
  • What is PID (pelvic inflammatory disease) and what should I know about it?
  • Will my menstrual cycles change because of HIV?
  • Should I ever consider taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT)?
  • Is the pill I'm on enough to keep me from getting pregnant?
  • Am I taking the right HIV med's?
  • Is my HIV under control?
  • What can I do to protect my partner if I want to get pregnant?
  • What time of the month should I try to get pregnant?
  • What should I do to protect my baby?
  • What if my baby is born HIV positive?
  • How does my having HIV affect my children?

Thinking about HIV meds? Be sure to ask your doctor these questions

  • How do HIV medicines work?
  • Why do I need to take several HIV medicines at once?
  • Which combination of medicines is best for me?
  • What is resistance, and why do I want to keep it from developing?
  • What test measure resistance, and should I have one?
  • Can I take this medicine while I am pregnant?
  • How many pills will I have to take a day?
  • What should I do if I miss a dose?
  • Will I have to avoid special kinds of food?
  • Will my HIV medicines affect any other medicines I am taking?
  • What about side effects?
  • What lab test should I have to keep an eye on side effects?

If you would like more information about HIV, HIV therapy, or related topics, ask your doctor. You can also request other booklets.

Also, contact Maclovia with Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc. at 1402 South Central Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona, 85004. She can be reached by phone at 602-257-0700 or fax at 602-257-5529. Hours of the clinic are Monday thru Friday, 8 am to 5 pm. or by appointment. They offer targeted outreach, professional behavioral health services, support groups for infected individuals, confidential HIV counseling and antibody testing provided by Maricopa County Department of Public Health, information and referral services to the Hispanic/ Latino community. Se Habla Espanol.


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This site was created by April Bergman in fulfillment of requirements for the course CSS 335: Latino Health Issues taught by Dr. Szkupinski Quiroga at Arizona State University, Spring 2005.