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HIV is a virus that targets the immune system of a human. HIV symptoms in men and women are mostly same but vary from one person to another. Early symptoms of HIV are mostly mild and can easily vanish after some time. But it is alarming because without any strong symptoms of HIV a person can transfer the infection to another men and women. This is the reason you should know if you have an illness. Since the initial HIV symptoms, men and women experience are subtle, they sometimes go unnoticed.There are three stages of HIV infection.

First of all, we will discuss the first stage or early stage of HIV symptoms. Here’s a list of some common and early symptoms of HIV after 1 week, including those that are specific to women.

Stage 1: Acute primary infection.

In the early weeks after becoming infected with HIV, it’s not uncommon for people to be without symptoms. Some people may have mild flu-like symptoms, including the following

Fever

The fever, usually one of the first symptoms of HIV. At this point, the virus is moving into the bloodstream and starting to replicate in large numbers. As that happens, your immune system induces an inflammatory reaction.

Headache

People with HIV who experience headaches are often concerned that an infection of the air sinuses or the brain has been overlooked. Like their HIV negative counterparts, individuals with HIV may also be concerned that allergy, vision problems, or cervical (neck) spine disease is the cause of their headaches.

Fatigue

The inflammatory response generated by your besieged immune system can cause you to feel tired and lethargic. Fatigue can be both an early and later symptom of HIV.

Skin rashes and skin sores.

Skin rashes can occur early or late in the course of HIV. In some cases, the rash can appear similar to boils with itchy, pink breakouts. Both men and women with HIV can get a yeast infection of the mouth, called thrush or oral candidiasis. It causes swelling and a thick, white coating on your mouth, tongue, and throat.

Swollen Lymph Nodes.

Lymph nodes often become inflamed or swollen, when the body is trying to fight an HIV infection. Major lymph nodes are located in the armpit, groin, and neck areas. You may experience swollen lymph nodes within a few days of HIV infection.

Night Sweats

Night sweats occur frequently in people with HIV. This is in the first few weeks though and they usually disappear after this. Night sweats can be caused for many reasons though are necessarily related to HIV infection.

Bacterial and yeast infections

Many women with HIV Vaginal yeast infections often — four or more times a year. Sometimes they’re the first sign you have the virus. They may also be harder to treat.

Menstrual changes

Women with HIV can have changed to their menstrual cycle. Your period may be lighter or heavier than normal, or you may not have a period at all. One may also have more severe premenstrual symptoms.

Stage 2: Chronic HIV infection.

After the early stage of HIV, the virus moves into a stage called the clinical latency stage. This can also be referred to as chronic HIV infection. The virus is still active during this stage, but it reproduces at much lower rates in the body. During the clinical latency stage of HIV, a person may not have any symptoms. Some people who are not taking any medicine to treat their infection may remain in this phase for 10 or more years.

Stage 3: AIDS

The third and final stage of HIV infection is the condition we know it’s AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome). People do not die from AIDS, in fact, AIDS is a whole bunch of different illnesses that we put under one umbrella calling it AIDS. That happens to an individual when their immune system becomes severely compromised and can no longer fight off infections. Now a lot of those infections are already pre-existing they’re already Inside the body and I’ve been there sometimes for many years it’s used TB as an example most of USA have been exposed to TB. Not all American’s are sick with TB that’s because their immune systems are strong and able to keep TB in check.

Once the immune system becomes weak it can no longer keep the TBM check now the more advanced that person is in terms of their infection the more difficulty in helping that person’s health get restored. So a person will show up at a testing clinic or a hospital. They’re on their last legs they probably have a life of a couple of weeks left to live and concoction nothing has worked for his immune system is so compromised. Generally, these patients are being put on antiretroviral therapy and what happens as a result of that in many instances is because the person is so weak we introduce the antiretroviral therapy their immune system is so severely damaged  that the diseases that exist in their body already or once they’ve recently been exposed to don’t even bother to activate maybe one or two of them will activate.

As a result of the immune system waking up because of the antiretroviral therapy what’s gonna happen is those diseases are also gonna wake up simultaneously. Now we’ve got two different conditions that that person is dealing with, they’re dealing with HIV and they dealing with TB. TB affects the body which is the th 2 side of your immune system versus the th one side of the system. So there are two reasons why people do not come forward and get help.

Is they wait too long and too late because they don’t want to know the truth, they don’t want to face reality, they’re in denial. Whatever their motivation is no sharp at the hospital. They’ll be at death’s door and then the antiretroviral therapy is introduced to them to them to try and save their lives as a result of them suddenly getting healthier. In other words, we’re supporting the immune system of the antiretroviral therapy other diseases will also wake up simultaneously. So something now the person is not just living with HIV anymore, now they’ve got the TB as well. Now we can manage this but it needs to be done under professional care. That particular such situation is called iris immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome. We’ll all that basically means in basic English is the immune system has woken up as a result of it waking up it’s working up a whole bunch of the diseases as well so that is the key. To get people into care as soon as possible don’t wait until you’re on death’s door and then show up at a clinic and hope that they can be treated. There’s a strong possibility that it can be treated, but the stronger and healthier than you are, the more chance we’ve got to saving your lives the longer you wait the more you delay the higher the possibility that you will actually, die as a result.

Also read: HIV test types and their accuracy