- Diseases, Disorders & Conditions
HIV and Aids Pictures, Symptoms, and Treatment
HIV Symptoms and Progression
After you are infected with the HIV virus you may not notice symptoms right away. You are already contagious though. Generally within a few weeks you'll notice feeling run down and flu like symptoms will follow. One of the first tell tale signs is swollen lymph nodes. Some of the other symptoms include muscle aches and spasms, fever, sore throat, and headache. Some people also develop a rash that can cover large parts of the body.
After this first outbreak of symptoms, many people don't have any further symptoms until years later when the virus progresses. What does happen in your body during that time is the breakdown of your immune system. The virus multiplies and gradually destroys you immune cells. As this progression continues some of the symtoms are diarrhea, weight loss, shortness of breath and bad coughing, and fever.
picture of HIV
After about 10 years if you get no treatment for the HIV virus it will progress into AIDS. At this point the immune system is extremely damaged making it almost impossible to fight off infection. The body will get many different types of infection that won't effect most people because of the state of the immune system.
Some of these infection symptoms are; chronic diarrhea, having a fever above 100 degree or extreme chills that shake the body, extreme fatigue that never goes away, trouble seeing, rashes and bumps on the skin, and soaking night sweats.
HIV and AIDS Treatment
There is no cure for AIDS but there is medicine that can help combat the break down of the immune system and aid in controlling the virus. The treatment of this virus can be as hard to deal with as the virus itself because the side effects are almost as bad as the symptoms of the disease.
Only a Doctor can determine exactly when to start treatment. While being treated, you will be tested every few months to see if the viral load is decreasing when the virus is in the HIV stage. It will gradually reduce it to being undetectable. Of course, this doesn't mean your cured, it just means your viral load has been decreased to the point of being undetectable on the test.