Monday, September 19, 2011

Information on AIDS – Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

AIDS stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. AIDS gradually reduces the effectiveness of the immune system and leaves individuals susceptible to opportunistic infections by making the body vulnerable to life-threatening illnesses. People with AIDS also have an increased risk of developing various cancers.

What are the causes of AIDS?
AIDS is caused by a retrovirus called HIV, the Human Immunodeficiency Virus. This virus causes slow but constant damage to the immune system cells, thereby leading the body to have difficulty in fighting off the infections. HIV is usually transmitted through sharing needles, unprotected sex, and from mother to infant before or during delivery or while breastfeeding.

Symptoms of AIDS – HIV Infection
People who become infected with HIV may not notice any immediate change in their health. However, some suffer from a flu-like illness within a few weeks of becoming infected, have complaints of fever, headache, tiredness, and may also develop a rash or swollen glands. These symptoms usually disappear within a few weeks after which the person feels normal. This asymptomatic phase often lasts for years. The median time to receive an AIDS diagnosis among those infected with HIV is 7-10 years.

Treatment of AIDS
The treatment of AIDS includes the antiretroviral medications which control the reproduction of the virus slow down the progression of the disease. When used in combination, these medications are termed Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAART). HAART combines three or more anti-HIV medications in a daily regimen.

When you start to choose antiretroviral treatment, you must adhere to it. People with this condition should take the advice of the experts to know the latest mode of therapy.

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