I am sure that you have heard about HIV before and then you should know that it refers to the human immunodeficiency virus. This is known to be a sexually transmitted illness that weakens the immune system of the infected people. The targets of the virus are the T-cells that are also known as CD4 cells. The purpose of these cells is to fight off any possible infections. In the end, the infection manages to overwhelm the CD4 cells and the body becomes unable to fight off the infections. When the number of CD4 cells falls under 200 per cubic millimeter of blood, opportunistic infection will take gold over the weakened immune system of the person in question.
Specialists will say that the patient has AIDS that stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. The symptoms that the HIV shows vary according to the phase of the infection, and only the tests are able to tell whether the person has been infected with HIV or not.
The first symptoms of the illness become visible the moment the organism starts creating the antibodies as a response to the virus. This process of seroconversion happens between six weeks and three months after the person contract the virus. In case a person has early symptoms of infection, they will be very similar to the symptoms of flu. These symptoms include fever, muscle aches, rash and swollen lymph nodes and also glands. Nevertheless, in the majority of the cases the early symptoms will not be visible.
The truth is that the infection slowly will take hold in the organism but usually this process is asymptomatic. The only way of knowing for sure whether a person has been infected or not with HIV is by doing an HIV test. You should also know that although the early symptoms might be missing, the people infected with HIV are still contagious and during this time, it is very likely that they will infect other people as well.
Through the progress of infection, the infected people will become more susceptible to illnesses and infections that usually are fought easily by the immune system. Although the majority of such illnesses and infections are easy to cure, because the people infected with HIV have a weakened immune system, the treatments might fail in their case.
In case the infected people don't receive any treatment, they might develop AIDS after 8-10 years of contracting the virus. In case they receive medication and drugs, this progress slows down. If the right treatment is given to these people, they might live up to 15 years without developing AIDS. Still in the last phase of HIV, before AIDS develops, the symptoms of HIV might get more severe including the chronic yeast infections or thrush, that is a yeast infection of the mouth, fever and night sweats, unexplained body rashes, easy bruising and also bouts of extreme exhaustion.
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