Thursday, June 16, 2022

What Does Hiv Positive Mean

How Hiv Is Spread

ACCM presents: HIV101 Chapter 3: What Does Being HIV Positive Mean?

HIV is spread when blood, semen, or vaginal fluids from an infected person enter another person’s body, usually through:

  • Sexual contact. The virus may enter the body through a tear in the lining of the rectum, vagina, urethra, or mouth. Most cases of HIV are spread this way.
  • Infected blood. HIV can be spread when a person:
  • Is accidentally stuck with a needle or other sharp item that is contaminated with HIV.

HIV may be spread more easily in the early stage of infection and again later, when symptoms of HIV-related illness develop.

A woman who is infected with HIV can spread the virus to her baby during pregnancy, delivery, or breastfeeding.

Does Hiv Always Show Up On Testing

No, if someone was recently infected, it might not show up with testing. How quickly HIV shows up on testing depends on the type of test done:

  • Testing that looks for the virus itself can find HIV 728 days after infection.
  • Testing that looks for HIV antibodies can find HIV antibodies 312 weeks after infection.

If You Already Have Hiv

If you are infected with HIV, you can greatly lower the risk of spreading the infection to your sex partner by starting treatment when your immune system is still healthy.

Experts recommend starting treatment as soon as you know you are infected.footnote 21

Studies have shown that early treatment greatly lowers the risk of spreading HIV to an uninfected partner.footnote 22, footnote 23

Your partner may also be able to take medicine to prevent getting infected.footnote 17 This is called pre-exposure prophylaxis .

Steps to avoid spreading HIV

If you are infected with HIV, you can greatly lower the risk of spreading the infection to your sex partner by starting treatment when your immune system is still healthy.

  • Take antiretroviral medicines. Getting treated for HIV can help prevent the spread of HIV to people who are not infected.
  • Tell your sex partner or partners about your behaviour and whether you are HIV-positive.
  • Follow safer sex practices, such as using condoms.
  • Do not donate blood, plasma, semen, body organs, or body tissues.
  • Do not share personal items, such as toothbrushes, razors, or sex toys, that may be contaminated with blood, semen, or vaginal fluids.

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What Happens After An Hiv Test And Getting The Results

FAST FACTS

  • If your result is negative, you can stop worrying but its good to keep testing regularly.
  • If your result is positive or , you will need to give a blood sample to have your results confirmed.
  • Remember that HIV is now a manageable illness if you do test positive you can start treatment which will keep you healthy.

is often the hardest step to take, but it is usually not as bad as you imagine.

Suspected Or Known Exposure To Hiv But No Symptoms

How to get tested for HIV

If you have not been tested for HIV, call your doctor if:

  • You suspect that you have been exposed to HIV.
  • You have engaged in high-risk behaviour and are concerned that you were exposed to HIV.
  • Your sex partner engages in high-risk behaviour.
  • Your sex partner may have been exposed to HIV.
  • Your sex partner has HIV.
  • You have any of the symptoms listed above.

Getting tested for HIV can be scary, but the condition can be managed with treatment. So it is important to get tested if you think you have been exposed.

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Testing Positive For Hiv

If you test positive, your doctor will complete a medical history and physical examination.

He or she may order several lab tests to check your overall health, including:

  • A complete blood count , to identify the numbers and types of cells in your blood.
  • A chemistry screen, to measure the blood levels of certain substances and to see how well your liver and kidneys are working.

Other tests may be done to check for current or past infections that may become worse because of HIV. You may be tested for:

How Much Do Hiv Tests Cost

Unlike rapid tests, blood tests for HIV are covered by Medicare, which means your doctor can order the test free of charge for you.

If you are not eligible for Medicare, you may also be able to claim some of the testing costs through private health insurance. Check with your provider to see if youre eligible.

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If My Test Is Negative Do I Need Get Tested Again

Talk to your doctor or the counselor or social worker at the testing site to see if you need to get tested again.

Some reasons to get tested again include if you:

  • have sex without a condom
  • are a guy who has sex with other guys
  • have had sex with more than three partners in the past year
  • get an STD
  • are a woman and are pregnant

What Is The Next Step After Testing Positive For Hiv

HIV-positive guys reading mean dating app messages | GMFA, FS

Testing positive for HIV often leaves a person overwhelmed with questions and concerns. Its important to remember that HIV can be treated effectively with HIV medicines.

Treatment with HIV medicines is recommended for everyone with HIV. HIV medicines help people with HIV live longer, healthier lives and reduce the risk of HIV transmission.

The first step after testing positive for HIV is to see a health care provider, even if you dont feel sick. Prompt medical care and treatment with HIV medicines as soon as possible is the best way to stay healthy.

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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.

Where Can You Get Tested

Its best to have an HIV test at the public health office theres one in every large town. You do not have to give your name there and the test is free of charge or costs between 10 and 15 euros. Some HIV/AIDS service organizations likewise offer HIV testing you do not have to reveal your name there, either.

You can also go to a doctors office, but you will have to give your name there. In addition, the result will be recorded in your file.

All pregnant people in Germany are offered an HIV test.

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See An Hiv And Aids Doctor Right Away

After finding out you have HIV, fear about the future may make it hard for you to take action. But once you know you’re HIV-positive, see a doctor with experience in HIV and AIDS as soon as you can. Don’t put it off. Your doctor will run tests to see how well your immune system is working, how fast the HIV is progressing, and how healthy your body is overall. With this and other information, your doctor can work with you to come up with the best treatment plan, including when and how to begin treatment. HIV drugs can often slow or prevent the progression of HIV to AIDS. Left untreated, though, HIV can lead to serious illness and death.

Who Is At Risk For Hiv Infection

What does it mean to be HIV

Anyone can get HIV, but certain groups have a higher risk of getting it:

  • People who have another sexually transmitted disease . Having an STD can increase your risk of getting or spreading HIV.
  • People who inject drugs with shared needles
  • Gay and bisexual men, especially those who are Black/African American or Hispanic/Latino American
  • People who engage in risky sexual behaviors, such as not using condoms

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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.

What Does A Reactive Test Result Mean

A reactive test result is a possible positive result, but means that you will need to go back to test again to confirm this. The healthcare worker will talk you through everything you need to know and help you with any worries that you may have.

You will need to give blood sample, which will then be sent to the lab for testing. At this stage, it’s very important to follow the advice of the healthcare professional.

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How Will I Know If I Am Undetectable

You cant tell if you have an undetectable viral load simply by how healthy you look and feel. The only way to know that your viral load is undetectable is by regular viral load monitoring.

Viral load monitoring involves a simple blood test to measure how many particles of HIV there are in a small sample of your blood . From this you and your healthcare worker can understand how well your ART is working.

A low viral load means that your ART is working well and controlling your HIV. If you have an undetectable viral load, it means that the amount of HIV in your body is so low that you can’t pass it on to other people through sex.

The point at which a viral load is classified as being undetectable may vary across different countries depending on the tests available. But so long as your viral load is under 200 copies per millilitre, youre considered virally suppressed and unable to pass HIV on.

The frequency with which you are offered viral load testing may vary depending on where you are and the services available to you. The World Health Organization recommends that when first starting ART, you should have your viral load measured after the first 6 months of treatment and again at 12 months. After becoming undetectable you should still receive viral load testing at least every 12 months. Depending on the resources available and your particular health status, your health worker may recommend that your viral load is monitored more often than this.

Tests For Hiv And Aids

HIV FAQ: What does it mean if a HIV test comes back postive?

Blood tests are the most common way to diagnose the human immunodeficiency virus , the virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome . These tests look for antibodies to the virus that are present in the blood of infected individuals. People exposed to the virus should get tested immediately.

Early testing is crucial with HIV. If you test positive for the virus, you and your doctor can develop a treatment plan to help fight HIV and ward off complications. Early testing also can alert you to avoid high-risk behavior that could spread the virus to others.

Because it can take from six weeks to six months to develop antibodies to the virus, follow-up tests may be needed. Your doctor will ask about your symptoms, medical history and risk factors and perform a physical examination.

The primary tests for diagnosing HIV and AIDs include:

UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.

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What Happens If I Stop Taking Antiretroviral Therapy

When therapy is stopped, viral load rebounds, and the risk of transmitting HIV to a sexual partner in the absence of other prevention methods returns. NIAID-supported research has provided clear-cut scientific evidence to support the benefits of staying on continuous antiretroviral treatment. In 2006, NIAIDs large clinical trial called SMART showed that people receiving intermittent antiretroviral treatment had twice the rate of disease progression compared to those receiving continuous treatment.

Taking antiretroviral treatment daily as directed to achieve and maintain durably undetectable status stops HIV infection from progressing, helping people living with HIV stay healthy and live longer, while offering the benefit of preventing sexual transmission. Stopping and re-starting treatment can cause drug resistance to develop, making that treatment regimen ineffective and limiting future treatment options.

Can Hiv/aids Be Prevented

You can reduce the risk of spreading HIV by

  • Getting tested for HIV
  • Choosing less risky sexual behaviors. This includes limiting the number of sexual partners you have and using latex condoms every time you have sex. If your or your partner is allergic to latex, you can use polyurethane condoms.
  • Getting tested and treated for sexually transmitted diseases
  • Not injecting drugs
  • Talking to your health care provider about medicines to prevent HIV:
  • PrEP is for people who don’t already have HIV but are at very high risk of getting it. PrEP is daily medicine that can reduce this risk.
  • PEP is for people who have possibly been exposed to HIV. It is only for emergency situations. PEP must be started within 72 hours after a possible exposure to HIV.

NIH: National Institutes of Health

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Treatment To Prevent Hiv Infection

Health care workers who are at risk for HIV because of an accidental needle stick or other exposure to body fluids may need medicine to prevent infection.footnote 13

Medicine may also prevent HIV infection in a person who has been raped or was accidentally exposed to the body fluids of a person who may have HIV.footnote 14 This type of treatment is usually started within 72 hours of the exposure.

Studies have shown that treatment with antiretroviral medicine also can reduce the risk of an uninfected person getting infected through sex.footnote 15, footnote 16

Hiv Transmission In Australia

HIV?AIDS Education Revised

In Australia, HIV is commonly transmitted through:

HIV is not transmitted by:

  • kissing, hugging, massaging, mutual masturbation and other body contact
  • social interaction
  • sharing food, dishes, utensils, drinking glasses
  • air, breath, or being coughed or sneezed on
  • mosquito, insect or animal bites
  • use of communal facilities .

It is perfectly safe to consume food and drinks prepared by someone who is HIV-positive even if theyre not receiving treatment.

People with HIV who are on treatment and achieve and maintain an undetectable HIV viral load cannot transmit HIV sexually.

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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:

  • Saliva

  • Malaise

  • 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:

Can You Have A Healthy Baby If You Are Hiv Positive

Finding out youre HIV positive when youre pregnant can be very difficult for you and your partner. Your midwife and HIV services will support you and help reduce the risk to your baby. Its possible to give birth to a healthy baby who is HIV negative. Find out more about HIV, pregnancy and womens health on the i-Base website.

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Things To Know About Hiv Suppression

A vial of blood

A vial of blood

Development of antiretroviral drugs to treat HIV has turned what was once an almost always fatal infection into a manageable chronic condition. Daily antiretroviral therapy can reduce the amount of HIV in the blood to levels that are undetectable with standard tests. Staying on treatment is crucial to keep the virus suppressed. NIAID-supported research has demonstrated that achieving and maintaining a durably undetectable viral load not only preserves the health of the person living with HIV, but also prevents sexual transmission of the virus to an HIV-negative partner.

How Do You Get Hiv

Undetectable and HIV: What does it mean

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.

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