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What is HIV and what is the process that a person should take an HIV test?

HIV is a bit – replicating retrovirus. It causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), a condition in humans in which progressive failure of the immune system allows life-threatening opportunistic infections and cancers to thrive. AIDS is the final stage of HIV infection, when a person’s immune system is severely damaged and has difficulty fighting disease and some cancers. HIV tests are used to detect the presence of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the virus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) in serum, saliva or urine. These tests tell if you are infected with HIV or not. According to a rough estimate given by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2000, insufficient blood screening had resulted in 1 million new HIV infections worldwide.

1-4 new HIV infections occur among young people aged 13-24 years, according to the CDC.

There are two types of HIV, HIV-1 and HIV-2. Unless otherwise specified, in the United States, the term “HIV” refers to any HIV-1. HIV-2 is found mainly in Africa.

Both HIV-1 and HIV-2 works to infect and lower levels of CD4 + T cells that are crucial to helping the body fight disease. When the number of CD4 + T cells below a critical level, the body becomes more susceptible to opportunistic infections. HIV-1 and HIV-2 appear to package their RNA differently. Evidence suggests that HIV-1 is able to mutate (HIV-1 infection progresses to faster than AIDS and HIV-2 is responsible for the majority of global infections).

HIV is transmitted through blood and genital fluids, including pre-seminal fluid and sperm or breast milk. You can get HIV by having unprotected sex or other sexual conduct with a person with HIV or by sharing needles, syringes or other injection equipment with a person infected with HIV.

It usually takes a little time for accurate results of an HIV test. This is because blood tests that you take do not prove the presence of HIV virus in the blood, but rather to test the antibodies your body makes to fight the virus. Many people with HIV do not know they are infected with the virus.

The amount of time required for antibodies to appear in HIV testing is highly variable because they can appear as early as two weeks or six months. During this time, you can test HIV negative, even if you are infected with the virus. You can still get HIV from someone who is in the window period. Since donors are unaware of their infection, donated blood and blood products used in medicine are regularly reviewed by HIV.

You and your partner should be tested for HIV and know their status before having sex for the first time. Pregnant women should be tested during each pregnancy positive. If the mother is infected with HIV, care must be taken to minimize the risk of transmitting the virus to the baby. There are medications available today, taking properly during pregnancy can certainly reduce the risk of HIV transmission to the child.

HIV testing is the most common blood test. Blood was first tested by ELISA (enzyme immunoassay). If antibodies against HIV are present in the serum, which can bind to HIV antigens.

ELISA results are expressed as a number. If the ELISA test is positive, the results will be confirmed by Western blot test, which only tests for HIV antibodies. In the US, for example, the ELISA results are not reported as “positive” unless confirmed by a Western Blot test. New HIV tests can detect HIV antibodies in mouth fluid (not saliva), a scraping from inside the mouth or urine. In 2012, the FDA approved the first HIV test “at home”. Mouth swab is used and show the results of 30 to 40 minutes. Any positive result must be confirmed by a laboratory using the Western blot.

Six months after a negative test, it is recommended that people get a final check six months later to confirm the results. If the results are always negative, it is almost certain that the person is not infected with HIV.
HIV is similar to other viruses, such as those that cause colds and flu, with one important difference – the human body can not get rid of HIV. Means. If HIV obtained, is obtained for life.

Currently we are at a critical moment in the fight against HIV / AIDS.

AIDS was a death sentence, but now more than 8 million people are in salvage therapy. In 2015, with the extension of the treatment and prevention of HIV, we could see the beginning of the end of AIDS.

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