AIDS is a sexually transmitted life-threatening disease. AIDS is caused due to the human immunodeficiency virus. HIV affects the immune system and damages the ability of the human body to fight against the organisms affecting human immunity, causing acquired immunodeficiency syndrome or AIDS. HIV and AIDS can affect both men and women. Infected blood can transfer the HIV virus from an infected person to a healthy person. Sexual contact with an infected person and usage of needles previously used by an infected person are the most common causes of AIDS among men and women.
Other than adult men and women, HIV and AIDS can also affect children. The virus can spread from a mother to her child during pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding. There is no known cure of HIV/AIDS. However, the symptoms of AIDS can be controlled. Some drugs have also helped reduce deaths from AIDS. Early diagnosis and treatment with regular intake of drugs can control the early signs of AIDS.
Early Signs and Symptoms of HIV/AIDS
Symptoms of an HIV infection or AIDS may appear around one week to 10 days after the infection by HIV virus. Symptoms vary depending upon the phase of viral infection. These symptoms occur because of the body’s reaction towards the infection. These early signs and symptoms are categorized under primary infection. These early signs are flu-like symptoms, which causes the early signs to be confused with other normal health problems. Hence, these symptoms should be screened to check whether they might have causes other than HIV infection.
To detect the early signs of this viral infection, diagnosis with an HIV test is recommended. The test determines whether the person is HIV positive or HIV negative. An HIV positive test confirms the presence of the virus in the blood. Patients experiencing early signs should immediately visit the doctor. Common early signs and symptoms of HIV/AIDS are:
- Rashes on the body
- Sore throat
Other early signs and symptoms may include the following:
- Pain in muscles
- Night sweats
- Joint pain
- Swelling of the glands
As the virus continues to grow, the following early signs and symptoms may also appear:
- Shortness of breath
- Weight loss
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