Q:

How long can HIV lay dormant?

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Quick Answer

HIV does not lay dormant; however, it may take anywhere from 7 to 10 years or more from the acquisition period until HIV develops into AIDS without any treatment, as stated by Dr. Larry Lutwick and Dr. Joel Gallant from HealthTap. There are many treatments that can help delay HIV from progressing to AIDS. HIV is typically detectable in the blood within several months after it has been acquired.

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Full Answer

HIV is short for Human Immunodeficiency Virus. This virus will compromise the immune system by attacking both the T-cells and the CD4 cells, and the body has no way of getting rid of it permanently. HIV will eventually progress to AIDS, which stands for Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome. AIDS is the final stage of HIV, and is much more severe as the patient's immune system is greatly compromised. Patients with AIDS are at risk for opportunistic infections.

Those who are infected with HIV have come across the virus in blood, spinal fluid, semen, pre-ejaculate, vaginal fluid or breast milk. To prevent acquiring HIV, experts recommend practicing safe sex by using a contraceptive, practicing safer injections by not sharing needles and always using new and sterilized needles and equipment each time and by minimizing exposure to body fluids in all environments.

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