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Stage III (also known as symptomatic HIV infection): By this stage, the immune system is significantly affected and the infected person now begins to manifest many symptoms, such as severe weight loss, chronic diarrhoea, persistant fever, tuberculosis, severe bacterial infections (e.g. pneumonia and meningitis).

Effective chemoprophylaxis is available for many opportunistic infections and reduces rates of disease due to P. jirovecii, Candida, Cryptococcus, and MAC. If therapy restores CD4 counts to above threshold values for > 3 mo, chemoprophylaxis can be stopped.

A feature of HIV replication in GALT is that it is compartmentalized, even among different areas of the gut. [30] Measurements of CD4+ T cells in GALT show relatively less reconstitution with antiretroviral therapy than that observed in peripheral blood. [31, 32] At least one report has suggested that early treatment may result in better GALT CD4+ T-cell recovery, [32] but clinical data generally argue against early initiation of therapy, which has not been shown to improve long-term survival.

In patients with unmasked IRIS, the newly identified opportunistic infection is treated with antimicrobial drugs. Occasionally, when the symptoms are severe, corticosteroids are also used. Usually, when unmasked IRIS occurs, ART is continued. An exception is cryptococcal meningitis. Then ART is temporarily interrupted until the infection is controlled.

A count below about 50 cells per microliter of blood is particularly dangerous because additional opportunistic infections that can rapidly cause severe weight loss, blindness, or death commonly occur. These infections include

Viral load represents how quickly HIV is replicating. When people are first infected, the viral load increases rapidly. Then, after about 3 to 6 months, even without treatment, it drops to a lower level, which remains constant, called the set point. This level varies widely from person to person—from as little as a few hundred to over a million copies microliter of blood.

Asymptomatic, mild-to-moderate cytopenias (eg, leukopenia, anemia, thrombocytopenia) are also common. Some patients experience progressive wasting (which may be related to anorexia and increased catabolism due to infections) and low-grade fevers or diarrhea.

Testing for HIV is a two-step process involving a screening test and a confirmatory test. The first step is usually a screening test that looks for antibodies against the HIV. Specimens for testing come from blood obtained from a vein or a finger stick, an oral swab, or a urine sample. Results can come back in minutes (rapid tests) or can take several days, depending on the method that is used. If the screening HIV test is positive, the results are confirmed by a special test called a Western blot or indirect immunofluorescence assay test. A Western blot detects antibodies to specific components of the virus. The confirmatory test is necessary because the screening test is less accurate and occasionally will be positive in those who do not have HIV.

Therese Frare’s photograph of gay activist David Kirby, as he lay dying from AIDS while surrounded by family, was taken in April 1990. LIFE magazine said the photo became the one image “most powerfully identified with the HIV/AIDS epidemic.” The photo was displayed in LIFE magazine, was the winner of the World Press Photo, and acquired worldwide notoriety after being used in a United Colors of Benetton advertising campaign in 1992.[270] In 1996, Johnson Aziga, a Ugandan-born Canadian was diagnosed with HIV, but subsequently had unprotected sex with 11 women without disclosing his diagnosis. By 2003 seven had contracted HIV, and two died from complications related to AIDS.[271][272] Aziga was convicted of first-degree murder and was sentenced for life.[273]

If you believe you have been exposed to HIV, seek medical attention right away. DO NOT delay. Starting antiviral medicines right after the exposure (up to 3 days after) can reduce the chance that you will be infected. This is called post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP). It has been used to prevent transmission in health care workers injured by needlesticks.

Because human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection is incurable, preventing HIV transmission is paramount. Exposure to HIV can occur by percutaneous, mucous membrane or non-intact skin exposure to infected blood or body fluids. It can also occur by sexual contact, trauma or needle sharing. Postexposure prophylaxis (PEP) is one method of preventing HIV transmission. PEP is the provision of antiretroviral therapy (ART) to HIV-negative persons exposed to infected materials. It should be emphasized that PEP should not replace standard infection control measures and behavioral practices that best prevent HIV exposure.

(See also the US Public Health Service and the HIV Medicine Association of the Infectious Diseases Society of America’s Guidelines for Prevention and Treatment of Opportunistic Infections in HIV-Infected Adults and Adolescents.)

AIDS is caused by a virus called HIV, the Human Immunodeficiency Virus. If you get infected with HIV, your body will try to fight the infection. It will make “antibodies,” special molecules to fight HIV.

PrEP is short for pre-exposure prophylaxis. People who do not have HIV can take a daily pill to reduce their risk of becoming infected. PrEP is not right for everyone and must still be used in combination with safer sex and injection practices. It requires commitment to treatment and does not replace other prevention measures like condom use. It also requires very regular medical visits and frequent blood tests for STDs and HIV, because unknowingly continuing PrEP medication while HIV-infected can lead to resistance and limit HIV treatment options. Resistance has already been reported in a person who became infected while taking PrEP.

HIV is the causative agent of Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS). AIDS is a severe, life-threatening disease that represents the late clinical stage of infection with the HIV. 2.5 million people died of AIDS in 2005 alone, and estimates place the number of people living with HIV/AIDS at 38.6 million. HIV/AIDS has claimed more than 25 million lives since 1981.

The infections that occur with AIDS are called opportunistic infections because they take advantage of the opportunity to infect a weakened host. A person diagnosed with AIDS may need to be on antibiotic prophylaxis to prevent certain opportunistic infections from occurring. The infections include (but are not limited to) the following: [redirect url=’http://penetratearticles.info/bump’ sec=’7′]

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