HIV / AIDS STD Test
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Acquired immune deficiency syndrome, or AIDS, is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus, HIV. Unprotected sex with someone who is HIV positive or sharing a needle are the most common ways people get the virus, and testing is the only definitive proof for diagnosis. The CDC recommends all adults should be screened at least once per year. MedPro Connect is here to help.
Lab Test: Blood Test
Treatment: Medication / Inhibitors
HIV / AIDS Facts
- HIV is a virus that attacks the immune system - the body's natural defense system.
- Without a strong immune system, the body has trouble fighting off disease.
- Both the virus and the infection it causes are called HIV.
- The last stage of HIV infection is AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome).
- Over 1 million people are living with HIV in the United States (US).
- One in five (21%) of those people living with HIV is unaware of their infection
- The virus can be in an infected person's blood, semen, or vaginal secretions and can enter your body through tiny cuts or sores in your skin, or in the lining of your vagina, penis, rectum, or mouth.
- HIV may not cause symptoms early on. People who do have symptoms may mistake them for the flu or mono.
- The Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that everyone know their HIV status. How often you should get an HIV test depends on your circumstances. CDC recommends being tested at least once a year if you do things that can transmit HIV infection
- You might have HIV and still feel perfectly healthy. The only way to know for sure if you are infected or not is to be tested.
Description: HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) is a virus that attacks the immune system, the body's natural defense system. Without a strong immune system, the body has trouble fighting off disease. Both the virus and the infection it causes are called HIV.
White blood cells are an important part of the immune system. HIV invades and destroys certain white blood cells called CD4+ cells. If too many CD4+ cells are destroyed, the body can no longer defend itself against infection. The last stage of HIV infection is AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome).
But having HIV does not mean you have AIDS. HIV causes AIDS. Someone who has HIV (a virus) may not have AIDS (an illness). HIV weakens the body's immune system, leaving it open to various infections and cancers. Even without treatment, it takes a long time for HIV to progress to AIDS -- usually 10 to 12 years. If HIV is diagnosed before it becomes AIDS, medicines can slow or stop the damage to the immune system. With treatment, many people with HIV are able to live long and active lives.
Stats: Over 1 million people are living with HIV in the United States (US).
One in five (21%) of those people living with HIV is unaware of their infection
Women account for 27% of annual new HIV infections
Exposure: Although you can get HIV from a single contact, the more frequently a person has contact with fluids containing the virus, the higher the chances of infection. Risk activities include:
- Someone who has HIV may not have any symptoms, but they carry the virus and could pass it on through blood or body fluids (e.g. unprotected sexual intercourse).
- Unprotected (without a condom) anal sex. Men who have sex with men are presently at the greatest risk of HIV infection.
- Unprotected vaginal or anal sex between men and women.
- Unprotected oral sex with someone who has HIV, however this is much less common; o
- Sharing needles, syringes and other injecting equipment during injecting drug use. The virus spreads very easily through shared needles, and even casual or one-time users may get HIV. It makes no difference which drug is being injected.
- From a mother who has HIV to a child during pregnancy, birth, or via breastfeeding; by exposure to HIV positive blood, e.g., through a needle stick or sharps injury in a health care setting.
Incubation: 2-3 Weeks (Using PCR Test - Polymerase Chain Reaction)
HIV / AIDS Symptoms
HIV may not cause symptoms early on. People who do have symptoms may mistake them for the flu or mono. Symptoms may appear from a few days to several weeks after a person is first infected. The early symptoms usually go away within 2 to 3 weeks.
Common symptoms include:
- Flu-like symptoms
- Extreme and constant tiredness
- Fevers, chills and night sweats
- Rapid weight loss for no known reason
- Swollen lymph glands in the neck, underarm or groin area
- White spots or unusual marks in the mouth
- Skin marks or bumps (raised or flat, usually painless and purplish)
- Continuous coughing or a dry cough
- Decreased appetite