HIV AIDS Symptoms Cause Diagnosis Treatment

HIV is a virus capable of causing immune system dysfunction. HIV AIDS, if untreated, can affect and kill CD4 cells. CD4 cells are a type of immune cell called T-cells.

HIV is more common in the long term because it kills more CD4 lymphocytes, making it more likely that various conditions and cancers will develop.


HIV is transmitted via bodily fluids such as:-

  • Blood
  • semen
  • Fluids for rectal and vaginal use
  • Breast milk

The virus is not transmitted in air, water, or by casual contact.

HIV inserts into the DNA of the cells. It’s a chronic condition. There is currently no cure for HIV. Many scientists are still trying to find one.

It’s possible to manage HIV with medical care, which includes antiretroviral therapies.

HIV patients who do not receive treatment are at risk of developing AIDS.

At this point, the immune response to other diseases, infections, or conditions is insufficient.

Untreated, life expectancy with end-stage AIDS is about 3 years trusted Source. HIV can often be managed with antiretroviral therapy. Life expectancy can almost match that of someone who has not been diagnosed.

It’s estimated that 1.2 million Americans are currently living with HIV. One in seven of those people doesn’t know they have HIV.

HIV can cause major changes in your body.

What does AIDS look like?

HIV infection can cause AIDS. It is the most serious stage of HIV. However, HIV is not a guarantee that AIDS won’t develop.

HIV can destroy CD4 cells. Normal CD4 counts range from 500 to 1,600/cubic millimeters for healthy adults. A person with HIV whose CD4 count falls below 200 per cubic millimeter will be diagnosed with AIDS.

A person can also be diagnosed with AIDS if they have HIV and develop an opportunistic infection or cancer that’s rare in people who don’t have HIV.

An opportunistic infection such as Pneumocystis jiroveci is one that occurs only in severely immunocompromised persons, such as a person suffering from advanced HIV infection (AIDS).

HIV can develop into AIDS if left untreated. There’s currently no cure for AIDS, and without treatment, life expectancy after diagnosis is about 3 years trusted Source.

This time period may be reduced if the person is diagnosed with a severe opportunistic disorder. Antiretroviral treatment can stop AIDS from developing.

If AIDS develops, it means the immune system is seriously compromised. It is weakened so that it cannot respond to all diseases and infections.

This leaves the person living with AIDS at risk for a variety of diseases including:

  • pneumonia
  • tuberculosis
  • oral thrush, a fungal condition in the mouth or throat
  • Cytomegalovirus or (CMV), a herpes virus, is one example.
  • cryptococcal meningitis, a fungal condition in the brain
  • toxoplasmosis, a brain condition caused by a parasite
  • cryptosporidiosis, a condition caused by an intestinal parasite
  • Cancer, including Kaposi sarcoma KS and lymphoma

The shortened lifespan associated with untreated AIDS is not a result of the condition itself. It is a result instead of the diseases and complications caused by AIDS.

HIV/AIDS and What is the connection?

HIV is a virus that causes AIDS. Human Immuno Virus does not automatically guarantee someone will develop AIDS.


Human Immuno Virus cases move through three stages.

  • 1 An acute stageThose are the first few days after transmission
  • 2 Chronic stage or clinical latency
  • 3 AIDS

HIV decreases the CD4 cell count and the immune system suffers. A normal adult’s average CD4 count is 500-1500 per cubic millimeter. A person with a CD4 count lower than 200 is thought to have AIDS.

It is not easy to tell how fast HIV cases move from the chronic stage. Without treatment, HIV can persist for up to a decade before it progresses to AIDS. It can last indefinitely if it is treated.

HIV is not curable but can be managed. HIV-positive individuals often live an almost normal life span if they get treatment early.

AIDS cannot be cured currently. However, treatment can increase a person’s CD4 counts to the point that they are considered free from AIDS. (This is a count of 200 and higher.

Opportunistic infections may also be treated. Human Immuno Virus and AIDS can be confused, but they aren’t the same thing.

HIV transmission – Know the facts

Human Immuno Virus can be contracted at any age. The virus can be transmitted via bodily fluids which include:-

  • Blood
  • semen
  • Vaginal, rectal fluids
  • Breast milk

There are many ways HIV can be passed from one person into another.

  • Anal or vaginal sex this is the most common way to transmit HIV.
  • Share needles, injectors, and other tools for drug use.
  • Tattoo equipment can be shared without it being sterilized between uses.
  • During pregnancy, labor and delivery by a mother to their child.
  • Breastfeeding.
  • By “premastication”, which is when a baby chews their food before it’s given to them.
  • by direct contact with the blood, semen vaginal, rectal and/or breast milk of someone living HIV.

You can also transmit the virus through blood transfusions and organ and tissue transfers. It is extremely rare for HIV to be transmitted in the United States, though it is routinely tested among blood, organ, and tissue donors.

Although theoretically possible extremely rare, HIV transmission is possible through the following:-

  • oral sex can only be done if there is bleeding gums or open sores.
  • Being bitten only if HIV-positive people have bloody saliva or open sores.
  • Contact between HIV-positive individuals and blood from someone with HIV, including broken skin, wounds, or mucous membranes

HIV doesn’t transfer to other people:-

  • Contact skin-toskin
  • Kissing, hugging or shaking hands
  • Air or Water
  • Sharing food or drinks, even fountains
  • You can also get saliva, tears and sweat (as long as it is not mixed with HIV blood).
  • You can share a toilet or towels with someone else.
  • Mozzies and other insects

It is important to know that HIV/AIDS patients who have been treated are almost impossible to transmit to others.

HIV Causes

HIV is an HIV variant that can be transmitted to African Chimpanzees. Scientists believe that the simian-immunodeficiency virus, or SIV, was transmitted from chimps into humans through chimpanzee meat.

Once the virus reached the human population, it mutated to become what we now call HIV. This happened likely as early as the 1920s.

HIV spread over many decades from Africa to other people. The virus eventually spread throughout the rest of the world. In 1959, HIV infection was discovered by scientists in a blood sample from a person.

It is believed that HIV has been around in the United States since the 1970s. However, public awareness of the disease didn’t begin until the 1980s.


Data suggest that 1 in every 7 HIV-positive people in the U.S. are unaware of their HIV status.

This awareness is essential for one’s well-being and health. It allows one to get the treatment they need early on and can prevent future problems.

Healthcare professionals can test the blood for HIV antibodies. After confirming positive results, healthcare professionals will retest the blood. Home testing kits are also available.

Current HIV testing platforms make it possible to detect HIV in under 2 weeksTrusted Source. People with known risk factors should have their HIV tested more frequently.

A rapid test is available for those at high risk. If the result is negative, the test provider may recommend another test in a few weeks.

Here are the types:-

  • HIV infection can often be detected by nucleic acid amplifying tests (sometimes known as NATs).
  • An antigen blood test, also known as an antibody blood test, can detect HIV in blood samples up to 18 days after exposure.
  • The majority of rapid tests and self tests are antibody tests. These tests can detect HIV antibodies as soon as 21 days after exposure.

Talk to your healthcare provider if you suspect that a person has been exposed to HIV in recent 72 hoursTrusted Source. This preventive treatment is called post-exposure protocol (PEP).


aids treatment
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There is no cure for HIV. However, there are treatments that can stop the spread of the virus.

The risk of transmitting HIV can be reduced by receiving these antiretrovirals. It can prolong a person’s lifespan and improve his quality of living.

HIV treatment can make it possible for many people to live long, happy lives. These drugs are increasingly effective and well-tolerated. You may only need one pill per day.

Here are some sections that discuss HIV treatment and prevention.

PEP is an Emergency Supply of HIV Medication

Anyone who may have been exposed to the virus within the last 72 hours trusted Source should speak with a healthcare provider about PEP.

This medication can be used to treat the infection.

PEP is a 28-day treatment that a person receives. After the 28-day period, he or she is monitored by a doctor for HIV.

Although PEP does not work 100% of the time, it is important to prevent any potential problems, such as safe injection practices and barrier protection.

Antiretroviral drugs

HIV treatment requires the use of antiretroviral drugs, which slow down the spread of the virus and fight infection.

The combination of several medications is called high active antiretroviral or combination antiretroviral therapies. One might refer to this approach as HAART/cART.

There are many different types of antiretrovirals.

Anti-protease agents

HIV requires protease to replicate. These drugs bind with the enzyme to stop it from working, which prevents HIV from reproducing itself.

There are many types of these:-

  • Cobicistat and atazanavir (Evotaz).
  • Lopinavir, ritonavir (Kaletra),
  • Darunavir and cobicistat are available from Przcobix

Integrase inhibitors

HIV requires another enzyme called Integrase in order to infect cells. These drugs block that enzyme. They are often the first line of therapy due to their effectiveness, and they have few side effects.

The following are Integrase inhibitors:

  • elvitegravir – Vitekta
  • Dolutegravir (Tivicay).
  • raltegravir (Isentress)

Nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors and nucleotide

These drugs, also known as “nukes” or NRTIs, interfere with HIV replication.

There are many types of these:-

  • abacavir, Ziagen
  • zidovudine or lamivudine in combination (Combivir).
  • emtricitabine (Emtriva)
  • tenofovir disoproxil (Viread)

Non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors

These drugs, NNRTIs (non-steroidal anti-infective drugs), make HIV replication harder.

An antagonist of the chemokine coreceptor

These drugs stop HIV from getting into cells. They are rarely prescribed by doctors in America because there are better drugs.

Intrusion inhibitors

HIV can’t enter T cells without entry inhibitors. HIV cannot replicate if it is not able to access these cells. They are also not common in the U.S.

Many people benefit from antiretroviral medication in combination. However, the exact combination will depend on individual factors.

The treatment can last a lifetime. It involves regular use of pills.

Every class of antiretrovirals can have side effects that are different, but there are some that are common:

  • nausea
  • Fatigue
  • diarrhea
  • Headaches
  • Rashes

Complementary or alternate medicine

Many HIV patients try an herbal, alternative, or complementary therapies. There is no evidence to support these remedies being effective.

While mineral or vitamin supplements may benefit health in other ways, it is important to discuss these with a healthcare provider first — some natural products can interact with HIV treatments.


Here are some ways to prevent HIV infection.


Barrier protection and PrEP

Using a barrier protection device, such as a condom, for every sexual act can significantly reduce the chance of contracting HIV/STIs.

In their 2019 guidelines, the Preventive Services Task Force advises that doctors only recommend PrEP to people with recent negative HIV tests.

PrEP is also approved by the doctors. It is a mixture of tenofovir dioproxil fumarate emtricitabine. They advise PrEP users to take PrEP only once per day.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA)Trusted Source has also approved a second combination drug tenofovir and emtricitabine as PrEP.

Using safe injection practices

HIV transmission is possible through intravenous drug usage. Sharing needles and other drug equipment can expose a person to HIV and other viruses, such as hepatitis C.

Every person injecting any drug should use a clean, unopened needle.

HIV can be reduced through needle exchange and treatment for addiction.

Avoid exposure to body fluids

Limiting Contact with blood and other fluids that may carry HIV is a way to minimize your exposure.

You can reduce your risk of infection by washing your skin often and thoroughly immediately after it comes in contact with bodily fluids.

Healthcare workers use masks, protective eyewear, and face shields to avoid transmission.

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