If You Are Hiv Positive What Does That Mean

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If You Are Hiv Positive What Does That Mean – HIV has several stages of infection. In the early stages after exposure, symptoms may include cold or flu-like symptoms. This may resolve spontaneously while HIV is still active in the body. It will then progress to a chronic infection where the symptoms can vary widely but include weight loss, fatigue and unexplained fever. The chronic stage can occur anytime after the acute stage, but it cannot be immediately after. If not treated, HIV can progress to AIDS, which is diagnosed based on the number of white blood cells circulating in the blood.

HIV is a virus that compromises the immune system. There is currently no cure for HIV, but since the late 1980’s, treatment in the form of antiretroviral drugs has been available to reduce the impact of any symptoms.

If You Are Hiv Positive What Does That Mean

If You Are Hiv Positive What Does That Mean

In most cases, when a person becomes infected with HIV, the virus remains in the body for life. However, the symptoms of HIV differ from those of other viral infections in that they occur in stages.

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If left untreated, the illness caused by the infection has three stages. Each has different symptoms and potential complications.

But regular antiretroviral treatment can reduce HIV to undetectable levels in the blood. This means the virus will not progress to the later stages of HIV infection or be transmitted to a partner during sex.

The first noticeable stage is primary HIV infection. This phase is also called acute retroviral syndrome (SARS) or acute HIV infection.

It usually causes flu-like symptoms, so it’s possible for someone at this stage to think they have a bad flu or some other viral illness rather than HIV. Fever is the most common symptom.

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, primary HIV symptoms may appear 2 to 4 weeks after initial exposure. They can last for several weeks. However, some people may only have symptoms for a few days.

ARS is common when a person develops HIV. But that’s not the case for everyone because, according to HIV.gov, symptoms can take a decade or more to appear.

Although the virus replicates rapidly in the weeks after infection, early HIV symptoms tend to appear only if the rate of cell destruction is high.

If You Are Hiv Positive What Does That Mean

This does not mean that asymptomatic HIV cases are less severe or that an asymptomatic person cannot transmit the virus to others.

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After initial exposure and possible primary infection, HIV can progress to a clinically latent stage of infection. Due to the lack of symptoms in some people, this is also called asymptomatic HIV infection.

According to HIV.gov, the latency of HIV infection can last up to 10 or 15 years. This means that the virus multiplies much more slowly than before. But that doesn’t mean that HIV is gone, or that the virus can’t be passed on to other people.

Chronic HIV symptoms can vary from minimal to more severe. People may experience episodes of the following, especially in advanced stages:

Clinically latent infection can progress to the third and final stage of HIV known as AIDS. The chance of progression is greater if the person with HIV does not receive or adhere to treatment, such as antiretroviral therapy.

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) blood is one of the indicators that HIV has advanced to the final stage. The normal range is 500 to 1600 cells/mm

Sometimes AIDS is defined simply by a person’s overall health – it develops when HIV significantly weakens the immune system and can lead to AIDS-defining conditions, such as certain infections and cancers, which are rare in people who don’t have it. HIV.

Individuals most likely to be infected with HIV are advised to be tested at least once a year. This can include people:

If You Are Hiv Positive What Does That Mean

, and each has a different window period – the time between potential exposure to HIV and when the test will be able to detect the virus. If you may have been exposed to HIV within the past 72 hours, taking post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) can help prevent transmission.

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Nucleic acid tests are usually able to detect HIV infection between 10 and 33 days after exposure.

Antigen/antibody tests using blood from a vein have a typical period of 18 to 45 days, while finger-prick antigen/antibody tests can be used 23 to 90 days after potential exposure.

A positive result will also be verified with a follow-up test (known as a “confirmatory test”). If the second test is positive, you will be diagnosed with HIV.

Finding out that you are HIV positive can be difficult for some. But there are health professionals who can help – both physically and emotionally.

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Your regular doctor can help you directly or refer you to someone who has experience with HIV. Alternatively, you can find a local experienced HIV clinician here.

It is important to start treatment as soon as HIV is diagnosed. Consult a physician or other healthcare professional if you experience any new or worsening symptoms.

The infection can be treated with antiretroviral drugs. They will need to be taken during all stages of HIV – even if there are no noticeable symptoms.

If You Are Hiv Positive What Does That Mean

In the body, preventing it from multiplying and can drop levels so significantly that the virus becomes invisible.

Hiv Transmission Rates

The drugs, therefore, help prevent disease progression, maintain quality of life, and can prevent transmission of the virus to others through sex.

You may be given a combination of drugs to prevent the virus from becoming resistant. Most people have an undetectable viral load within 6 months.

If this is not possible, all sexual partners can be protected by taking a drug called pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). Condoms should also be used to prevent transmission during sex.

The amount of HIV in the blood using viral load tests and checking the number of CD4 cells in the blood – this helps to fight infections.

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If HIV develops into AIDS, other medical interventions are usually needed to treat the disease or AIDS-related complications, which can be life-threatening.

The only 100% effective method of HIV prevention is to avoid sharing injection drug equipment and abstaining from sex.

The first symptoms usually appear within a few weeks of exposure. However, some people do not experience symptoms until years later.

If You Are Hiv Positive What Does That Mean

Regular testing is critical if you have an increased chance of contracting HIV. With prompt and proper treatment, the infection and its symptoms can be controlled, helping you and your sexual partners stay as healthy as possible.

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Lauren Sharkey is a British journalist and author specializing in women’s issues. When he’s not trying to figure out how to avoid migraines, he can be found discovering the answers to his hidden health questions. She has also written a book profiling young female activists around the world and is currently building a community of such resisters. Catch her on Twitter.

Has strict procurement guidelines and is based on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We avoid using tertiary references. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and up-to-date by reading our editorial policy.

Our experts continually monitor the health and wellness space and we update our articles as new information becomes available. People with certain risk factors should be tested more often. You should get tested at least once a year if:

Before having sex with a new partner for the first time, discuss your sexual and drug use history, disclose your HIV status, and consider getting tested for HIV together.

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If you are sexually active gay or bisexual, you may benefit from more frequent testing (every 3 to 6 months). Talk with your doctor about your risk factors and what testing options are available to you.

All pregnant women should be tested for HIV so they can take steps to stay healthy and protect their babies.

Recommends that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 be tested for HIV at least once as part of routine health care, and more often if you do things that could increase your chances of getting HIV.

If You Are Hiv Positive What Does That Mean

Even if you and your partner only have sex with each other, you should both know your HIV status.

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HIV testing is covered by health insurance with no copayment, as required by the Affordable Care Act. If you don’t have health insurance, some places offer free or low-cost tests.

If you have an HIV test at a healthcare facility or laboratory, a healthcare professional will take a sample of your blood or oral fluid.

Your doctor can talk with you about your risk factors, answer any questions you may have, and discuss next steps.

If you are being tested outside of a healthcare facility or laboratory, you will likely have a rapid test (oral liquid or finger prick). The counselor administering the test should be able to answer questions and provide recommendations for follow-up testing if necessary.

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Source of content: Division of HIV Prevention, National Center for the Prevention of HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STDs, and Tuberculosis, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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