During the incubation period, human immunodeficiency virus often cases flu-like symptoms, such as fever, sore throat, swollen glands and headache, reports AIDS.gov. Some people also have muscle and joint pain, rashes and fatigue. Known as acute retroviral syndrome, this condition does not affect every person infected with HIV.Continue Reading
Headaches are also a common symptom during the incubation period. The infection itself, HIV medication or other factors such as stress, depression and substance abuse are causes of these headaches, states PubMed.
After the period of acute infection, HIV enters a latency stage, during which the patient is often asymptomatic, states the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Individuals who take antiretroviral medication during this time may lead normal lives for decades without showing any symptoms, reports AIDS.gov.
Following the latency period, viral loads begin to rise and the number of T-cells in the blood falls. When the T-cell count drops below a certain level, the patient has AIDS, explains the CDC. At this stage, many patients experience more chronic symptoms, such as diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss and breathing difficulties, states Healthline. People with AIDS often develop cancers and opportunistic infections, such as lymphoma, Kaposi's sarcoma, tuberculosis and recurrent pneumonia, the CDC reports.Learn more about Conditions & Diseases