Are Women At Greater Risk Of Hiv During Menstruation
The menstrual bleeding during a period itself does not increase the risk of acquiring HIV. However, hormonal changes during menstrual cycles are believed to place women at greater risk than at other times. The biology of the vagina and cervix mean that women, especially adolescents and older women, are in general more vulnerable to HIV and sexually transmitted infections than men.
A 2015 study in monkeys concluded that immune protection is at its lowest mid-cycle, providing a window of opportunity for infections to enter. In addition, researchers following a group of 37 HIV-negative female sex workers in Nairobi, Kenya found an association between the first stage of the menstrual cycle and factors that could mean increased susceptibility to HIV infection. The authors concluded that a better understanding of the natural hormonal cycle on the vaginal immune environment is required to identify exactly how it influences HIV sexual transmission in women.
Since more research is needed to establish clarity on when women are most at risk, women should always consider using barrier methods such as male and female condoms to provide the best protection from STIs including HIV, regardless of the stage of their menstrual cycle.
Hiv Effects On The Nervous System
About half of people with AIDS have nerve problems related to the virus. Infection or inflammation can damage your spinal cord or brain and keep your nerve cells from working the way they should. Some medications can also affect your nervous system.
Inflammation in your brain and spinal cord can lead to confusion and other thinking problems as well as weakness, headaches, seizures, and balance problems.
When AIDS is far along, you might get dementia and have problems remembering things.
Having HIV can also affect your mental health. Many people living with it have depression or anxiety. Mental health professionals and support groups can help you work through your concerns and manage your life with HIV.
The opportunistic infection cytomegalovirus can attack your nerves, making it hard for you to control your arms and legs or your bladder.
Itâs common for tiny holes to form in spinal fibers when people with AIDS donât get treatment. This is called vacuolar myelopathy and causes trouble walking.
HIV or the drugs that treat it can also damage nerves all over your body, causing neuropathy. You might have pain, numbness, weakness, burning, stiffness, or tingling.
Antiretroviral therapy to treat HIV can lower your risk of getting these conditions or complications. If a medication is causing the problems, your doctor might switch you to a different one.
How Does Hiv Turn Into Aids
HIV and AIDS are often used interchangeably. However, the two are very different. HIV is a virus. Without treatment, HIV can destroy the immune system and end with AIDS. AIDS is the last stage of the development of HIV. The three stages of HIV infection are acute HIV infection, clinical latency and AIDS. Though there is no cure for HIV, there are drugs available that can delay or even prevent the progression of HIV to AIDS.
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How Is Hiv Transmitted Or Spread
The following are the means by which the HIV virus is spread:
Vertical transmission. HIV can be spread to babies born to, or breastfed by, mothers infected with the virus.
Sexual contact. In adults and adolescents, HIV is spread most commonly by sexual contact with an infected partner. The virus enters the body through the lining of the vagina, vulva, penis, rectum, or abraded or irritated tissues in the lining of the mouth through sexual activity.
Blood contamination. HIV may also be spread through contact with infected blood. However, due to the screening of donated blood for evidence of HIV infection, the risk of acquiring HIV from blood transfusions is extremely low.
Needles. HIV is frequently spread by sharing needles, syringes, or drug use equipment with someone who is infected with the virus. Transmission from patient to health care worker, or vice-versa, through accidental sticks with contaminated needles or other medical instruments, is rare.
No known cases of HIV/AIDS have been spread by the following:
Enlarged lymph nodes
An HIV-infected child is usually diagnosed with AIDS when the immune system becomes severely damaged or other types of infections occur. As the immune system deteriorates, complications begin to develop. The following are some common complications, or symptoms, of the onset of AIDS. However, each child may experience symptoms differently. Symptoms may include:
Is Hiv And Aids An Occupational Concern
Where ever there is the possibility of contact with blood in the workplace, workers should take precautions to prevent contact with the skin, eyes or mucous membranes .
Routine Practices are recommended to prevent the spread of HIV in the workplace. Routine practices are based on the principle that all blood, body fluids, secretions, and excretions except sweat, non-intact skin, and mucous membranes, unless they contain visible blood, may contain transmissible infectious agents. Steps involve using protective clothing such as gloves, gowns or aprons, masks and protective eye wear when dealing with people’s blood and other blood-contaminated body fluids such as semen and vaginal secretions. They also do not apply to saliva except in dentistry where saliva is likely to be contaminated with blood.
Hand washing after contact with blood, blood-contaminated body fluids and soiled items is also recommended to reduce the risk of infection.
The best approach to most diseases is to prevent their occurrence – occupationally-related diseases are no exception. In the case of HIV, prevention is the only cure.
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How Can I Protect Myself
The best way to protect yourself from HIV is to not have sex and not share needles.
If you decide to have sex, reduce your risk of getting HIV by:
- using a condom every time you have sex
- getting tested for HIV and making sure all partners do too
- reducing the number of sexual partners you have
- getting tested and treated for STDs having an STD increases the risk of HIV infection
Understanding how HIV spreads can help you make safer choices about sex. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions about HIV and if you want to get tested.
How Long Does It Take For Hiv To Show Up Its Symptoms
Symptoms can vary depending on the stage of HIV you are in. Please look at the details below that may help you out if you suspect yourself as HIV positive.
- Acute HIV stage: Early symptoms occur two to four weeks after the first exposure at this phase. Please note that in some cases, there are no symptoms at this stage.
Although we managed to identify various symptoms associated with HIV, some cases dont show signs. Symptoms may not appear for a decade or longer. In this case, there could be a possibility of high HIV transmission to others.
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How Do You Get Hiv
HIV is carried in semen , vaginal fluids, anal mucus, blood, and breast milk. The virus gets in your body through cuts or sores in your skin, and through mucous membranes . You can get HIV from:
having vaginal or anal sex
sharing needles or syringes for shooting drugs, piercings, tattoos, etc.
getting stuck with a needle that has HIV-infected blood on it
getting HIV-infected blood, semen , or vaginal fluids into open cuts or sores on your body
HIV is usually spread through having unprotected sex. Using condoms and/or dental dams every time you have sex and not sharing needles can help protect you and your partners from HIV. If you do have HIV, treatment can lower or even stop the chances of spreading the virus to other people during sex. If you dont have HIV, theres also a daily medicine called PrEP that can protect you from HIV.
HIV can also be passed to babies during pregnancy, birth, or breastfeeding. A pregnant woman with HIV can take medicine to greatly reduce the chance that her baby will get HIV.
HIV isnt spread through saliva , so you CANT get HIV from kissing, sharing food or drinks, or using the same fork or spoon. HIV is also not spread through hugging, holding hands, coughing, or sneezing. And you cant get HIV from a toilet seat.
What Does The Hiv Test Involve
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that all people between the ages of 13 and 64 be tested at least once for HIV. People with known risk factors should be tested yearly, or more frequently.
HIV tests are very accurate, but no test can detect the virus immediately after transmission. How soon a test can detect HIV depends on what the test is looking forantibodies, antigens, or the virus itself.
HIV testing uses a blood draw, a finger stick, or an oral swab. The type of sample used depends on the test.
These three types of diagnostic tests are used to detect HIV:
Antibody and antigen/antibody tests are typically used first because they are less expensive and easier to administer. They may also detect signs of HIV sooner. A NAT test may be used to confirm a positive result on an antibody or antigen/antibody test, or if these tests are negative and there is a strong suspicion for new HIV infection.
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Effects On The Immune System
HIV primarily affects the body by targeting and damaging cells in the immune system. The immune system protects the body against viruses, bacteria, and fungi.
After attaching itself to a type of white blood cell called a CD4 T cell, the virus merges with it. These T cells are an important part of the immune system.
Once inside the CD4 T cell, the virus multiplies. It damages or destroys the cell, then moves on and targets other cells.
A persons CD4 T-cell count is an indication of the health of their immune system.
A healthy CD4 T-cell count is 5001,600 cells/mm3 of blood. If a person does not receive treatment for HIV, their CD4 T-cell count drops over time.
When it drops below 200 cells/mm3, the persons immune system is significantly impaired, making them more susceptible to opportunistic infections.
What Is The Difference Between Hiv And Aids
HIV is the virus that causes AIDS. The HIV virus is what is transmitted from one person to another. Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome is the condition that develops when HIV weakens the immune system to the point that it can no longer fight off diseases and infections. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines an AIDS diagnosis as a CD4 lymphocyte count of less than 200 cells per cubic millimeter of blood .
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Stage : The Asymptomatic Stage
Once a person has been through the acute primary infection stage and seroconversion process, they can often start to feel better. In fact, HIV may not cause any other symptoms for up to 10 or even 15 years .
However, the virus will still be active, infecting new cells and making copies of itself. HIV can still be passed on during this stage. If left untreated, over time, HIV infection will cause severe damage to the immune system.
Acute Hiv Infection Faqs
Q: When does acute HIV infection occur?A: Acute HIV infection is the first stage of HIV infection. Some people may feel ill with flu-like symptoms two to four weeks after being infected with HIV, while other people who have contracted HIV develop no symptoms at all.
Q: How long do acute HIV infection symptoms last?A: The symptoms of acute HIV infection, which can include flu-like symptoms, swollen lymph glands and mouth ulcers, generally last a few weeks. See the section on Symptoms of acute HIV infection.
Q: How is acute HIV infection treated?A: Acute HIV infection should be treated with antiretroviral drugs as soon as possible after diagnosis. Antiretroviral therapy can help slow the progression of HIV by decades.
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Hiv Effects On The Circulatory System
Several things make your chances of heart-related problems go up. Because HIV affects your immune system, your body will be inflamed as it tries to fight the infection, like itâs on a constant simmer. This kind of inflammation has been linked to heart disease.
Some drugs you take for HIV can also make heart disease more likely. They can cause insulin resistance, which makes you more likely to get diabetes, and problems breaking down fats. Diabetes, in turn, raises your risk of heart disease. You might need medicines to control your blood sugar and cholesterol.
If you smoke, quit. Eat a variety of vegetables and fruits, plenty of whole grains, and foods with omega-3 fatty acids. Choose lean cuts of meat and low-fat dairy products. Exercise, like taking a brisk walk, for 20 to 30 minutes most days of the week.
If youre carrying extra weight, losing as little as 5 or 10 pounds could make a big difference.
What Are Possible Complications
You may feel pain and itchiness due to the rash, but complications are unlikely to arise from the rash itself. What complications arise depend on the underlying cause. For example, you may develop life-threatening allergic reactions with certain drugs, which causes a skin reaction. Or you may develop headaches, a stiff neck, or back pain from an infection. As mentioned before, be sure to see a doctor who can look at all the symptoms youre having and make a diagnosis.
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How Flu Infiltrates Your Body
The flu virus typically enters your body through your nose via droplets from an infected person who sneezes or coughs near you. If a sick person is standing within six feet of you, theyre close enough to spread germs.
Once in your nose, the virus sets up residence, infecting the cells in your nasal passageways and airways. The virus enters a cell and replicates, making daughter viruses that then go and infect more cells nearby. This continues until more and more of your cells are infected.
Most people who get the flu feel sick for three to five days, but you can feel crummy for longer, Chu says. You can infect someone else a day before your symptoms appear and up to seven days after. Youre most contagious within the first three to four days after you notice symptoms.
Once inside your cells, the virus is able to remain undetected by your immune system, essentially hiding in plain sight for a little while, at least.
How Does Chronic Hiv Affect The Body
The chronic HIV stage is known as the latent or asymptomatic stage. During this stage, a person usually wont have as many symptoms as they did during the acute phase. This is because the virus doesnt multiply as quickly.
However, a person can still transmit HIV if the virus is left untreated and they continue to have a detectable viral load. Without treatment, the chronic HIV stage can last for many years before advancing to AIDS.
Advances in antiretroviral treatments have significantly improved the outlook for people living with HIV. With proper treatment, many people who are HIV-positive are able to achieve viral suppression and live long, healthy lives. Learn more about HIV and life expectancy.
A normal CD4 count ranges from approximately 500 to 1,600 cells per cubic millimeter of blood in healthy adults, according to HIV.gov.
A person receives an AIDS diagnosis when they have a CD4 count of fewer than 200 cells/mm3.
The survival rate for people with AIDS varies depending on treatment and other factors.
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Budding Off The Host Cell
Now that the proteins are assembled from the apparatus and the long strands have completed the viral RNA, the virus buds off the living host cell. In the majority of cases, the budding process completely destroys the host cell, which means that more and more cells are destroyed as the virus multiplies.
Once the infection creates millions of new virus cells by hijacking the healthy DNA in the hosts body, it comes closer to the person developing AIDS. With most viruses, the immune system fails to identify the virus inside the cells, which is why it starts destroying the infected cells before the virus manages to make new copies.
Drugs that can stop and slow down this process are called protease inhibitors. Nowadays, the most popular treatment is the antiretroviral treatment, where people infected with HIV use medicines to treat this infection. By combining several medicines that target the life cycle of HIV, such medicines prevent the reproduction of HIV. This helps people live longer and healthier lives.
Unfortunately, a cure for HIV is yet to be discovered.
Symptoms Of Swollen Lymph Nodes
The most common signs are:
Tenderness or pain in your lymph nodes
Swelling that makes your lymph nodes the size of a kidney bean or possibly larger
Because swollen lymph nodes are usually linked to some type of illness, you might also have other symptoms, depending on what that illness is:
Runny nose, sore throat, or fever
Swelling of clusters of lymph nodes in different places in your body
Hard lymph nodes that wonât move or get bigger quickly
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