What Are Some Signs of HIV?


Quick Answer

According to the Mayo Clinic, most people show flu-like symptoms after first contracting HIV. These symptoms include headache, fever, muscle aches, sore throat, chills and swollen lymph nodes. These symptoms usually last only a few weeks.

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Full Answer

According to the Mayo Clinic, symptoms vary depending on the stage and progression of the virus. Symptoms of the first stage of infection may be mild enough to go unnoticed. If this is the case, then the virus is likely to progress to what is called clinical latent infection. Symptoms of this much more advanced infection are fever, fatigue, weight loss, cough, diarrhea, swollen lymph nodes and shortness of breath. WebMD also lists persistent skin rashes, short term memory loss, and mouth and genital sores as other common symptoms during this advanced stage of infection. If one does not receive treatment during this period of time, the virus is likely to advance to AIDS within 10 years, according to the Mayo Clinic. At this point, the immune system is greatly damaged, making the patient susceptible to other opportunistic infections, which the Mayo Clinic defines as infections that would normally not present a problem to a person with a normal immune system. The Mayo Clinic also suggests to visit one's doctor as soon as possible if one experiences any of these symptoms or may have contracted the disease.

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