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China's long-lived AIDS patient dies
Updated: 2005-10-18 08:41

China'S longest-surviving AIDS patient died at the age of 44 on Oct. 12 after 10 years of fighting the deadly disease, reported cnradio.com, the Chinese National Radio Web site Monday.

The man, known under the alias of Lian Dong, was from southwest China's Chongqing Municipality. He was diagnosed with AIDS in 1995, making him the first AIDS patient in that city.

He was reportedly doing business in southwest China's Yunnan Province in 1989, during which time he is believed to have contracted the disease after sharing needles to shoot up heroin.

Lian's condition had been deteriorating since the beginning of this year. He became very thin and his appetite was diminishing.

The hospital said he finally died of "liver prostration caused by HIV virus."

The world's longest-surviving AIDS patient on record is an African child, who contracted the HIV virus from the mother and lived until the age of 12, according to the report.

It is unclear how long the virus was in Lian's body before he was diagnosed. If the preclinical period was added, Lian's life span might be the longest in the world of an HIV/AIDS victim, the reported quoted experts as saying.

The experts contributed Lian's relatively long life to several factors, including a medical treatment incorporating both Western and traditional Chinese medicine, good hospital care and love and encouragement from his family.

The Chinese Ministry of Health said last week that China had reported a total of 126,808 HIV infections, including 28,789 AIDS cases, by the end of June. The disease has killed 7,375 people.

However, experts estimate that China now has 840,000 people infected with HIV, 80,000 of whom are thought to have AIDS. The number of people living with HIV/AIDS in China is predicted to exceed 10 million by 2010 if present trends persist.

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