HIV, or the human immunodeficiency virus, is a sexually transmitted disease that assails the immune system. The virus attacks your CD4 cells (or T4 cells), which are necessary to fight off illnesses. Eventually, the virus overwhelms the CD4 cells and your body becomes unable to fight off diseases and infections. Once your body's CD4 cell count falls below 200 per cubic millimeter of blood, and/or an opportunistic infection takes hold of your weakened immune system, you will be diagnosed with AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome). Symptoms of HIV vary according to what stage of the infection you are in and only HIV testing can tell you if you have the disease.
Early Symptoms of HIV
The earliest symptoms of HIV infection occur while your body begins to form antibodies to the virus (known as seroconversion) between six weeks and three months after infection with the virus and become full blown AIDS int ten to fifteen years. However, for most people, the first symptoms of HIV will not be apparent.
Although the infection is slowly taking hold of your body, the majority of those infected with HIV will be asymptomatic. Only by being tested for HIV can you know for sure if you have been infected. Yet, despite the absence of HIV symptoms, you are still highly contagious during this time making it very much a possibility to infect others. If you a pregnant or nursing, you can also infect your baby.
Advance stage Signs, Symptoms and Psychological effects:
We all have bad day feeling blue but when test results confirms of the illness depression sets in.
Diarrhea sometimes goes with depression. It can be a life-threatening problem if not treated correctly and rapidly.
The most common HIV opportunistic infection known as thrush. A white stingy substance stays in the mouth even after brushing.
4. Weight Loss
Weight loss is a common HIV symptom. Unless you are actively trying to lose weight by exercising and watching what you eat, weight loss is a serious problem.
People infected with HIV are living longer and more productive lives but their problem is fat redistribution syndrome or lipodystrophy.
One of the most serious is a condition known as lactic acidosis. Acidosis means too much acid in the body. Lactic acidosis occurs when cells make lactic acid (from glucose) faster than it can metabolize. The key signs of lactic acidosis include unusually deep and rapid breathing, vomiting, and abdominal pain.
7. Sinus Infections
Your head feels congested and full. Sinusitis (sinus infection) is a common problem for people living with HIV.
Fatigue can be a common problem for those living with HIV. Increase your energy level by first identifying the cause of your fatigue. This feature will help you do just that.
Nausea is not only aggravating and can make you feel sick, when associated with vomiting it can be dangerous. People living with HIV are often troubled by nausea; either because of their HIV medications or because of some opportunistic infection.
It is probably the most common cause of pain for people living with HIV. The burning and tingling of peripheral neuropathy can make a person feel miserable.
Sources: aids.about, epigee
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