HIV is a virus that causes human immuno-deterioration. The disease usually manifests symptoms through different stages. Knowing the stages and symptoms of the disease can help with early treatment, increase life expectancy and reduce the risk of infection to others.
1. What is the window phase of HIV?
The window phase of HIV is the period between when HIV is actually infected and when HIV is detected by tests. A person infected with HIV usually takes 3-6 months for the body to produce a sufficient amount of antibodies against the virus. In particular, during this time, you can still transmit HIV to others.
2. What paths does HIV pass?
HIV, also known as resistant paralysis, is a disease of the immune system, caused by human immuno-deterioration viruses. HIV is usually transmitted mainly through the following paths:
2.1 Blood sugar
- Injecting drugs, sharing needle pumps
- Blood transfusions, or blood products without screening
- Sharing sharp tools (e.g. tattoo tools)
2.2 Sexual crossing
- Oral, anal,vaginal sex without the use of protective measures (e.g. condoms)
- Promiscuous sex with various people.
- Sex with an HIV-infected person
2.3 From mother to child
- During pregnancy, labor or childbirth
- Through breast milk
However, you cannot be infected with HIV through the following activities:
- Shake hands, hug, kiss, eat with people living with HIV
- Coughing, sneezing
- Mosquito bites and insect bites.
3. Symptoms of HIV through each stage
3.1 Early stages (window phase): Acute HIV infection
HIV infection usually occurs by bringing body fluids from an infected person to the body of an un-infected person. This stage is when the viruses cause the patient to rise quickly, resulting in more viruses in the peripheral blood. HIV levels can reach several million virus particles per ml of blood.
During the window phase of HIV, sufferer may develop flu-like symptoms or monocytic leukemia 2-4 weeks after the virus begins to spread in the body.
Common symptoms include fever, rash, lymphadenopathy, pharyngitis, myalges, discomfort, fatigue, mouth and esophageal sores. Some of the less common symptoms include headache, nausea, vomiting, swelling of the spleen and liver, weight loss, consentation and neurological symptoms. The duration of symptoms is different for each person, on average it will be about 28 days and the shortest is 1 week.
However, not everyone has these symptoms, there are some who do not have any manifestations during this period. Even if the patient visits a doctor, he or she may be misdiagnosed as one of the common bacterial infections with similar symptoms and signs. Therefore, you should get tested regularly to promptly detect the disease, prevent infection to others.
3.2 Second stage: Chronic HIV infection
After your immune system "loses" with HIV, flu-like symptoms will also disappear. The doctor calls this an asympto symptomatic latent stage or clinical stage. Mostly, during this period, the person does not have any symptoms. You also can't tell if you're infected or can transmit it to others. The chronic period usually lasts 10 years, even more so.
During this time, unsubsolived HIV kills T-CD4 cells (cells that act as "guards" on duty against pathogens) and destroy your immune system. Mostly, the normal number of CD4 cells is between 450-1400 cells per microliter. Without timely treatment, the number of CD4 cells will decrease, causing your resistance to weaken, which is very susceptible to other infections.
In addition, as the number of HIV viruses in the blood increases rapidly, the risk of transmiting the virus to others also increases. It is important not to let this period go on for long. If you start taking HIV drugs during this period, they can help fight HIV, rebuild your immune system and stop the spread of the virus. If you are taking medication, regularly visit your doctor and build a healthy habit to lead a healthier, more useful life.
3.3 Final stage: AIDS
In the late stages of AIDS, there are some of the following symptoms:
- The body is regularly in a state of fatigue
- Swollen lymph nodes in the neck or inguinal
- Fever lasts more than 10 days
- Night sweats
- Unexplained weight loss
- Brown spots on your skin don't go away
- Shortness of breath
- Severe, prolonged diarrhea
- Yeast infection in the mouth, throat or vagina
- Inexplained bruises or bleeding
People with AIDS who do not take the drug live only about 3 years, even less if they have a dangerous infection. But HIV can still be treated at this stage. If you take HIV medications follow your doctor's advice on other conditions you may have, with the right treatment and a healthy lifestyle, you can live longer.
4. Treatment for people living with HIV
Currently, there is no vaccine that can prevent HIV infection and no therapy can completely remove the HIV virus from the body. However, the good news for people living with HIV can prolong and improve their quality of life with antiretroviral therapy, called ART (Antiretroviral Therapy).
ART is a therapy that uses antiviral drugs, which slows down the growth of HIV in the body, increases immunity and reduces the risk of chance infections.
Depending on the condition of each person, the doctor will give appropriate ARV regimens, as long as the therapeutic effect is guaranteed.
However, like any other drug, ARV can cause side effects for some people. These symptoms are usually mild and quickly disappear after a few weeks. Side effects include:
- Nausea, vomiting
- Or dreaming of nightmares
Early HIV testing helps control and prevent infection. This is very important to help people living with HIV know their condition if they are in the window stage, contributing to increasing the effectiveness of treatment of the disease as well as reducing the risk of transmiting HIV to others. The social disease screening package of Share99 International Health Hub helps customers screen for social diseases to detect diseases early for effective treatment and avoid complications.
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Article reference source: Webmd.com
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