Recognize the Signs of HIV

The Human Immunodeficiency Virus or HIV is a lentivirus that when left untreated will gradually process to AIDS. The process of the HIV virus is to affect the immune system by destroying the white blood cells which are responsible to ward off diseases and infections in the human body. Doctors are agreed that even with the appearance of symptoms, an HIV test will be the only way an individual can get confirmation if he or she is infected or not.

Here is a list of early onset symptoms that may or may not make an appearance:

An extreme feeling of tiredness or fatigue that has no probable cause or explanation would be an early onset indication. While it is true that a lot of diseases could also cause fatigue, the fatigue that is present in an HIV-infected person will have the following characteristic:

There are times that we feel sleepy at the start or middle of the day maybe because we were not able to get a good night’s sleep. For an HIV-infected person, the sleepy feeling will be felt throughout the day even after a restful and uninterrupted sleep the night before. The energy level is also way down which forces an infected individual to take frequent naps. The fatigue that is felt is not only for a day but continues for weeks and even a month.

Excessive night sweats accompanied by fever is another sign. This usually happens during the primary or acute stage of an HIV infection. Many infected people may not feel this, but most of them will experience this around two to four weeks from infection.

Other than night sweats and fever, there will be manifestations of flu-like symptoms such as chills, swollen lymph nodes and glands in the genital area, neck, and armpits, a sore throat, headache, muscle aches and pains, and nausea. Again, it has to be stated that the flu-like symptoms can also be manifestations from other infections that would not necessarily be an HIV virus disease.

There will be some instances of diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite. This will result in weight loss that is one of the symptoms of either the first phase or last phase of an HIV infection. They can also be symptoms of other illnesses or infection.

Growth of mouth and genital ulcers are some of the early signs of an HIV infection. Most of the time these ulcers are painless but would still be a cause for concern.

The second phase of an HIV disease is the latency period where symptoms disappear even when nothing has been done. The latency stage covers a long period where the infected individual will look and feel healthy. It is also the most dangerous period for spreading the infection especially when the infected individual does not get an HIV test. This will make the infected person unaware that he or she has the HIV infection as they feel healthy and robust and think that the period of sickness that happened was only a flu infection.