AIDS, short for Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome, is a medical condition that occurs when the immune system is severely damaged by the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). The virus attacks and destroys white blood cells, which are responsible for fighting infections in the body. As the number of white blood cells decreases, the immune system becomes weaker, and the body becomes more vulnerable to opportunistic infections and cancers. The diagnosis of AIDS is made when a person with HIV develops one or more opportunistic infections or cancers or when their white blood cell count drops below a certain level.
AIDS can cause life-threatening infections, cancers, and other health problems if not treated properly. However, with the appropriate medical care, including antiretroviral therapy (ART), people with HIV can manage the virus and prevent it from progressing to AIDS, allowing them to live long, healthy lives.
What are the symptoms of AIDS?
The symptoms of AIDS include rapid weight loss, recurring fever or night sweats, persistent diarrhea, swollen lymph glands, sores in the mouth, anus, or genitals, pneumonia, memory loss or confusion, depression, and skin rashes or bumps. It may take years for HIV to develop into AIDS.
What causes AIDS?
HIV is primarily transmitted through contact with infected bodily fluids, such as blood, semen, vaginal fluids, and breast milk. Unprotected sex with an infected person, sharing needles or other injection equipment with an infected person, mother-to-child transmission during pregnancy, childbirth, or breastfeeding, and occupational exposure to infected blood are the common ways in which HIV can be transmitted.
Who are at risk of developing AIDS?
Certain groups of people are at a higher risk of contracting HIV, including men who have sex with men, people who inject drugs, people who have unprotected sex with multiple partners, infants born to HIV-positive mothers, and healthcare workers or others exposed to infected blood.
Can Hepatitis B occur because of AIDS?
Hepatitis B and AIDS are two distinct viral infections that are caused by different viruses and are transmitted in different ways.
Hepatitis B is caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV), which is primarily transmitted through exposure to infected blood or bodily fluids, such as through unprotected sexual contact, sharing of needles or syringes, or mother-to-child transmission during childbirth. Click here to know more about: Hepatitis B
AIDS, on the other hand, is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which is primarily transmitted through unprotected sexual contact, sharing of needles or syringes, or mother-to-child transmission during childbirth.
While HIV infection can weaken the immune system and increase the risk of developing other infections, including hepatitis B, it may not directly cause hepatitis B. However, individuals who are co-infected with both HIV and HBV may experience more severe symptoms and a faster progression of both infections.
It is important to note that both hepatitis B and HIV are preventable and treatable conditions. It is recommended that individuals who are at risk of contracting either infection seek testing, counselling, and treatment to manage and prevent further transmission.
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