Dormant And Incubation Not About Testing
Questions like this are among the most common inquiries that About AIDS receives. The basic answer: No, your test was accurate it doesn’t need repeating.
Knowledgeable test counselors usually will explain this. However, many private physicians do not understand that HIV doesn’t pop up years later after a properly done negative test.
The media also often cause confusion by using “dormant” and “incubation” without understanding what they mean. These terms have nothing to do with testing. They are about disease development.
The test is for HIV antibodies, the protein soldiers that an infected person’s body makes to fight HIV. Almost everyone, if infected, would make enough antibodies to trigger a test reaction by three months after the last exposure the “window” for testing. No other time period applies to HIV testing.
The new “rapid” HIV test produces basic results in 20 minutes, on-site. However, it uses regular antibody testing technology, so the three-month window still applies. It’s just the no-lab-needed result that is quick.
“Incubation” is the time from infection to developing full AIDS, a period of slow immune destruction averaging 10-12 years.
HIV is seldom truly “dormant.” It becomes active immediately upon entering the body. The only dormant HIV is what’s inside inactive T4 cells in the lymph nodes. HIV can’t reproduce unless the cell is active so more accurately, that virus is dormant only because its host
How Does A Virus Become A Latent Infection
Herpes viruses are by far the most common viral infections that establish latency.
This is a large family of viruses whose genetic material, or genome, is encoded by DNA . Herpes viruses include not only herpes simplex viruses 1 and 2 which cause oral and genital herpes but also chickenpox. Other herpes viruses, such as Epstein Barr virus, the cause of mononucleosis, and cytomegalovirus, which is a particular problem in immunodeficient individuals, can also emerge after latency.
Retroviruses are another common family of viruses that establish latency but by a different mechanism than the herpes viruses. Retroviruses such as HIV, which causes AIDS, can insert a copy of their genome into the human DNA that is part of the human genome. There the virus can exist in a latent state indefinitely in the infected human since the virus genome is copied every time DNA is replicated and a cell divides.
Viruses that establish latency in humans are difficult or impossible for the immune system to eradicate. That is because during latency there can be little or no viral protein production in the infected cell, making the infection invisible to the immune system. Fortunately coronaviruses do not establish a latent infection.
What Are Viral Load Blips
Even if a person is durably undetectable and taking antiretroviral therapy daily as prescribed, they may experience small, transient increases in viral load called blips followed by a decrease back to undetectable levels. Having a blip is relatively common and does not indicate that antiretroviral therapy has failed to control the virus. Scientists are working to better understand what causes blips.
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The Asymptomatic Stage Of Hiv
Once seroconversion is over, most people feel fine and dont experience any symptoms. This is often called the asymptomatic stage and it can last for several years.
Though you might feel well at this stage, the virus is active, infecting new cells, making copies of itself and damaging your immune systems ability to fight illness.
Tests For Other Abnormalities
In patients with HIV myopathy, EMG is a sensitive diagnostic test. The most common finding on muscle biopsy is scattered myofiber degeneration with occasional inflammatory infiltrates. Other pathological findings include nemaline rod bodies, cytoplasmic bodies, and mitochondrial abnormalities. Serial creatine kinase levels are useful for monitoring the course of the disorder.
EMG is also useful for evaluating mononeuritis multiplex. Results generally reveal multifocal axonal neuropathy. Biopsy of nerve tissue reveals inflammation and vasculitis. In some cases, CMV inclusions have been found.
In patients with elevated transaminases, acute viral hepatitis A, B, and C should be excluded with appropriate serologic testing.
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Early Symptoms In Primary Hiv
The first noticeable stage is primary HIV infection. This stage is also called acute retroviral syndrome , or acute HIV infection. Because HIV infection at this stage usually causes flu-like symptoms, its possible for someone in this stage to think their symptoms are due to a severe flu rather than HIV. Fever is the most common symptom.
Other symptoms include:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , primary HIV symptoms may show up two to four weeks after initial exposure. Symptoms can continue for up to several weeks. However, some people may exhibit the symptoms only for a few days.
People with early HIV sometimes dont show any symptoms, yet they can still transmit the virus to others. This is attributed to the fast, unrestrained viral replication that occurs in the early weeks after contracting the virus.
Symptoms Of Hiv Infection
Most people experience a short flu-like illness 2 to 6 weeks after HIV infection, which lasts for a week or 2.
After these symptoms disappear, HIV may not cause any symptoms for many years, although the virus continues to damage your immune system.
This means many people with HIV do not know they’re infected.
Anyone who thinks they could have HIV should get tested.
Some people are advised to have regular tests as they’re at particularly high risk.
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Days To 20 Years After Exposure
The chronic stage of infection occurs once the immune system brings the virus under control. During this phase, HIV will go into hiding, where it resides in various cells and tissues throughout the body in a dormant state known as latency. HIV latency can persist without symptoms for 10 years or more, although some people may experience signs within a year or two.
During the early chronic phase, lymphadenopathy may be the only notable sign of an HIV infection. In some cases, the glands may be visibly enlarged and reach up to an inch or more in size. If the condition persists for more than three months, its referred to as persistent generalized lymphadenopathy .
Even during latency, the virus will multiple imperceptibly and gradually deplete immune cells known as CD4 T-cells. As immune deficiency develops, a number of nonspecific symptoms are likely to appear, including:
- Oral candidiasis , a fungal infection that causes the formation of creamy, white lesions on the sides of the tongue and lining of the mouth
- Unexplained fevers and drenching night sweats that soak through bedsheets and nightclothes
- Severe, uncontrolled diarrhea that lasts for more than three days
Each of these symptoms is commonly seen in persons with immune deficiency. They may, in some cases, be caused by HIV itself or by an infection that has yet to be diagnosed.
How Do I Talk To My Partner About Their Risk Of Acquiring Hiv
People living with HIV can involve their partners in their treatment plans. Research shows that adhering to treatment often can improve with support from loving relationships and from the community.
Pre-exposure prophylaxis , in which an HIV-negative person takes antiretroviral medication to prevent infection, can be part of the conversation. Learn more about PrEP.
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How Is Tb Spread
TB germs are spread from person to person through the air. TB germs are put into the air when a person with TB disease of the lungs or throat coughs, sneezes, laughs, or sings. People nearby may breathe in the germs and become infected. TB is NOT spread by sharing silverware or cups, or sharing saliva when kissing someone.
What Can Happen If Hiv Goes Undetected
At one point in time, contracting HIV was almost certain to be a fatal diagnosis. Fortunately, sweeping advances in medicine and technology have now made it possible for patients with HIV to lead long, healthy lives. However, it is still critical that men and women with HIV understand how to monitor their condition and protect themselves and others. The caring team at Health Services of North Texas understands the sensitive and personal nature of living with HIV/AIDS and is dedicated to providing confidential and compassionate care for patients in Denton, Plano, and Wylie, TX. Learn more about how to manage HIV here, including what it means if your HIV is undetectable and what the difference is between undetectable HIV and undetected HIV.
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What Does A Positive Hiv Test Result Mean
If you have a positive HIV test result, a follow-up test will be conducted. If the follow-up test is also positive, it means you are HIV-positive.
If you had a rapid screening test, the testing site will arrange a follow-up test to make sure the screening test result was correct. If you used a self-testing kit at home, a positive HIV test result must always be confirmed by additional HIV testing performed in a health care setting. If your blood was tested in a lab, the lab will conduct a follow-up test on the same sample.
If your follow-up test result confirms you are infected with HIV, the next thing is to take steps to protect your health and prevent transmission to others. Begin by talking to your health care provider about antiretroviral therapy . ART is the use of HIV medicines to treat HIV infection. People on ART take a combination of HIV medicines every day. ART can keep you healthy for many years and greatly reduces your chance of transmitting HIV to your sex partner if taken the right way, every day. Your health care provider will help you decide what HIV medicines to take.
If you have health insurance, your insurer is required to cover some medicines used to treat HIV. If you dont have health insurance, or you need help because your insurance doesnt pay for the treatment you need, there are Federal resources that may help you.
To lower your risk of transmitting HIV,
How Long Can Trichomoniasis Be Dormant In A Woman
Many people believe that trichomoniasis has some level of âdormancyâ or latency, similar to symptoms of syphilis in females, hepatitis C symptoms in females, genital herpes, or other infections, and continue to participate in sexual activity. In reality, trichomoniasis simply doesnât show signs or symptoms in most cases. About 7 out of 10 people with trichomoniasis show no symptoms. Even when symptoms do occur, those symptoms can be mild to the point of being unnoticeable or easily mistaken for other common conditions. Trichomoniasis symptoms in women, for instance, are fairly similar to your basic yeast infection or urinary tract infection.
Granted, the sexually transmitted infection can be highly painful and irritating for some people. When left untreated, trichomoniasis can stay in your system ostensibly for years. Symptoms may come and go, but you may simply think that youâre prone to yeast infections.
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Living With Hiv Doesnt Have To Be A Burden Protect Yourself And Your Loved Ones With Advanced Hiv Care And Monitoring In North Texas
While receiving a positive HIV test can certainly be frightening, living with HIV does not mean what it once did. In fact, countless men and women go on to lead normal, healthy, fulfilling lives when their HIV is treated appropriately and monitored regularly. To learn more about how to manage HIV, the importance of monitoring undetectable HIV, and what treatments are available to you, call the welcoming team at Health Services of North Texas today. We look forward to helping you enjoy life once again with comprehensive HIV/AIDS services in Denton, Wylie, and Plano, TX.
Can You Get Hiv From Someone Who Is Undetectable
The CDC confirms that patients with undetectable HIV cannot transmit the virus to others via sexual activity. Keep in mind, however, that undetectable HIV is different from undetected or undiagnosed HIV. A person with a detectable HIV load who does not realize they are infected can certainly spread the virus to others through syringe sharing or sexual contact. Furthermore, undetectable HIV loads can increase and become high enough to risk infecting others, particularly when ART is poorly managed or stopped altogether. For this reason, it is essential that HIV-positive patients undergo routine monitoring to ensure their HIV load remains undetectable.
All of our convenient HSNT locations in Denton County and Collin County offer comprehensive HIV/AIDS care, treatment, and monitoring, including the following services:
- HIV medication and therapy management
- Case management
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Treatment Of Acute Hiv Infection
Antiretroviral treatment of chronic HIV infection is well supported and widely recommended. ART for acute HIV infection is controversial. However, treating acute HIV infection has several theoretical advantages, as follows :
To relieve symptoms in some symptomatic patients
To halt viral evolution at a time of minimal viral diversity, prior to viral adaptations to specific host immune responses
To protect developing immune responses from the deleterious effects of sustained HIV viremia
To reduce the viral set-point
To limit the latent pool of infection
Several studies have shown no benefit for short-term combination antiretroviral therapy during acute infection. However, a 2006 retrospective study found that an initiation of combination therapy within 2 weeks of HIV seroconversion was associated with sustained viral load and CD4 cell count benefits for up to 72 weeks after termination of therapy.
In 2007, another group found that in patients who received 3 months of antiretroviral therapy, the subsequent CD4 cell count decline over 3 years was slower than in patients who did not receive acute therapy. When antiretroviral therapy was started later than 2 weeks after antibody seroconversion, however, patients had a persistent but decreasing CD4 T cell count benefit and a loss of the viral load benefit by week 72 after discontinuation of treatment.
CD4 cell counts appear to deplete very rapidly during acute HIV infection.
A Latent Infection Versus A Persistent Viral Infection
But there is another way that a virus can hide in the body and reemerge later.
A latent viral infection occurs when the virus is present within an infected cell but dormant and not multiplying. In a latent virus, the entire viral genome is present, and infectious virus can be produced if latency ends and the infections becomes active. The latent virus may integrate into the human genome as does HIV, for example or exist in the nucleus as a self-replicating piece of DNA called an episome.
A latent virus can reactivate and produce infectious viruses, and this can occur months to decades after the initial infection. Perhaps the best example of this is chickenpox, which although seemingly eradicated by the immune system can reactivate and cause herpes zoster decades later. Fortunately, chickenpox and zoster are now prevented by vaccination. To be infected with a virus capable of producing a latent infection is to be infected for the rest of your life.
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Stage : Clinical Latency
In this stage, the virus still multiplies, but at very low levels. People in this stage may not feel sick or have any symptoms. This stage is also called chronic HIV infection.
Without HIV treatment, people can stay in this stage for 10 or 15 years, but some move through this stage faster.
If you take HIV medicine every day, exactly as prescribed and get and keep an undetectable viral load, you can protect your health and have effectively no risk of transmitting HIV to your sexual partner.
But if your viral load is detectable, you can transmit HIV during this stage, even when you have no symptoms. Its important to see your health care provider regularly to get your viral load checked.
What Is An Immune
There are a few places in the body that are less accessible to the immune system and where it is difficult to eradicate all viral infections. These include the central nervous system, the testes and the eye. It is thought that the evolutionary advantage to having an immune-privileged region is that it protects a site like the brain, for example, from being damaged by the inflammation that results when the immune system battles an infection.
An immune-privileged site not only is difficult for the immune system to enter, it also limits proteins that increase inflammation. The reason is that while inflammation helps kill a pathogen, it can also damage an organ such as the eye, brain or testes. The result is an uneasy truce where inflammation is limited but infection continues to fester.
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How Long Does It Take For Hiv To Progress To Aids
How long does it take for HIV to progress to AIDS? In all but a few rare cases, if left untreated, HIV will progress to a stage of infection called AIDS. This is when the immune defenses have been compromised, and the body is less able to defend itself against potentially life-threatening infections.
Does Being Durably Undetectable Mean That The Virus Has Left My Body
Even when viral load is undetectable, HIV is still present in the body. The virus lies dormant inside a small number of cells in the body called viral reservoirs. When therapy is halted by missing doses, taking a treatment holiday or stopping treatment, the virus emerges and begins to multiply, becoming detectable in the blood again. This newly reproducing virus is infectious. It is essential to take every pill every day as directed to achieve and maintain a durably undetectable status.
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