Both men and women infected with HIV may or may not have symptoms in the early stages, but flu-like symptoms are common shortly after infection, according to Healthline. A person may develop a headache or fever and feel tired within days or weeks of an HIV infection, but these symptoms usually disappear within a few weeks, reports WebMD. AIDS is the final stage of HIV, and symptoms include weight loss, cough, vomiting, severe fatigue and seizures.
Other symptoms of an early HIV infection include enlarged lymph nodes, a sore throat, joint pains and rashes, notes WebMD. People with the virus may not notice any other symptoms until the virus enters its later stage of AIDS.
If an HIV infection goes undetected, the disease usually progresses to full-blown AIDS within 10 years, explains WebMD. At this time, the body's immune system weakens, and other diseases and complications, such as tuberculosis, meningitis, cytomegalovirus and cancer, can arise.
During the early stages of an HIV infection, also known as the latency stage, the body has low levels of HIV, but the infected person can still transmit the virus to others, reports AIDS.gov. If an HIV infection progresses to AIDS, patients may also contract pneumonia, have prolonged bouts of diarrhea, exhibit skin changes, and suffer from depression and other neurologic conditions.