HIV was one of the most feared diseases of the 1990s and early 21th century. Today it is still a chronic and fatal disease and, although the symptoms can be controlled much better than before, it is important to know what HIV is and how to detect it.
Do you think you may have been infected? Do you know the difference between HIV and AIDS? What symptoms develop when you have this disease? What precautions do you have to take if you suffer from this disease? Here we tell you a little.
What is HIV
According to the Mayo Clinic, HIV is a human immunodeficiency virus that puts your life at risk since it causes AIDS, which is the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. This sexually transmitted disease interferes with the body’s immune system, weakening it to the point where it is unable to fight any of the diseases that normally afflict us.
There is currently no cure. There is only a record of four people who have been cured since the disease was known. However, thanks to medication, the infection and symptoms can now be controlled more than ever. AIDS deaths have been drastically reduced. For this, early detection is important, so we invite you to take this test for sexually transmitted diseases.
Usually after being infected with HIV you have a flu-like illness. This develops between 2 weeks and a month after being infected with the virus and lasts a couple of weeks. It is known as primary infection. It is accompanied by the following symptoms as well:
- Night sweats
- Pain in extremities
- Throat pain
- Mouth sores that can be very painful
- Swollen lymph nodes
The symptoms can be mild, but for them to appear, the viral load in the blood needs to be very high, so that is when it is most easily spread to others.
Then the next stage can develop, which is latent clinical infection. The virus is still present in the host and its immune system, but symptoms may not develop. Other people can develop much more serious diseases, which gives way to symptomatic HIV infection where we can find the same symptoms as in the first stage, but stronger and accompanied by candidiasis, herpes and pneumonia.
Ultimately, HIV evolves into AIDS. This can be 8 years or a decade. This means that there is already serious damage to the immune system. Symptoms develop such as:
- Constant fatigue
- Persistent white spots
- Unusual lesions on the tongue or mouth
- Recurring fever
- Shaking chills
- Chronic diarrhea
An ongoing problem
HIV remains a very serious and ongoing problem. According to the World Health Organization, it has claimed more than 36 million lives and it is estimated that today there are almost 38 million people living with this disease.
Getting tested regularly is vital to avoid contagion in one and, in case of having acquired the disease, infecting others. If you think you may be infected because you have had sexual intercourse without using a condom, you have symptoms, you have many sexual partners, you have shared syringes or you are going to start a sexual life with a new partner, we invite you to find out and do, or do together , this test to rule out any disease and have a responsible sex life.