Today in history: The first recognised AIDS cases are reported in the USA

By Drum Digital
05 June 2015

On 5 June 1981, reported that 5 gay men in California were suffering from a rare pneumonia

On 5 June 1981, the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (USA) reported that 5 gay men in California were suffering from a rare pneumonia (Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia or PCP). This strain of pneumonia was found in patients with weakened immune systems.

These were the first 'recognised' cases of what became known as AIDS. Therefore, 1981 is therefore often referred to as the beginning of the HIV/Aids epidemic in the USA, and at this stage doctors believed that the disease only affected gay men.

Today we know that HIV/Aids is a deadly disease that can be contracted by anyone and is currently not curable. The United Nations AIDS agency (UNAIDS) says the evidence that HIV is the underlying cause of AIDS is 'irrefutable'

Source: SAHistoryOnline

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