Eazy-E Did Not Get HIV from Tainted Acupuncture Needles
Rapper Frost recently raised eyebrows with his claim that Eazy-E’s death from AIDS was the result of him being infected with HIV-infused acupuncture needles. However, a microbiologist has come forward to debunk the conspiracy theory that acupuncture was how the late rapper contracted the HIV virus.
As we previously reported, the veteran rapper told an interviewer in the hip-hop documentary For the Record, he believed that Eazy was receiving acupuncture with tainted needles after he injured himself on a Suzuki Quadrunner.
“I think they really had a stronghold of giving [Eazy-E] tainted needles with the AIDS virus through acupuncture,” he said. “How else could somebody else die that fast of AIDS. Have you ever heard of someone dying of AIDS in two weeks, bro? It’s like, ‘I’m in the hospital, I contracted the AIDS virus, on March 26 or whatever, I fall out and I die.”
In an interview with Vice, Wilmore Webley, a microbiologist at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, said that acupuncture would be a terribly ineffective way to give someone HIV.
According to him, acupuncture needles lack the shaft and reservoir -- like a syringe -- to hold HIV-infected blood. "So the probability of it actually storing enough blood or serum with enough viral particles in there to lead to an infection is extremely low," he said.
In addition, HIV has to enter a blood vessel in order to infect. Since acupuncture needles are superficial and deliberately avoids blood vessels there's no probability of infection. After all, adds Webley, "you're not getting up from acupuncture bleeding all over yourself."
Webley also pointed out that this type of theory can be harmful and lead to miseducation about HIV and AIDS. "Especially in the African-American and underrepresented minority populations where this virus continues to be a huge problem," he states. He believes that if people start thinking of HIV as some kind of biological weapon than a public health crisis people might get lax in their "personal responsibility."
In the end, it very important that you inform yourself about the prevention and treatment of the HIV virus. For more information about HIV/AIDS, go to AIDS.gov.