AIDS is a syndrome caused by the HIV virus. It is when a person’s immune system is too weak to fight off many infections, and develops when the HIV infection is very advanced. This is the last stage of HIV infection where the body can no longer defend itself and may develop various diseases, infections and if left untreated, death. There is currently no cure for HIV or AIDS. However, with the right treatment and support, people can live long and healthy lives with HIV.
1. It may cause influenza-like illness, tuberculosis, opportunistic infections and tumors, pneumocystis pneumonia, severe weight loss, Kaposi's sarcoma. The time period usually ranges from 6 months (rarely) to 15+ years. HIV infection passes through a series of steps or stages before it turns into AIDS. These stages of infection as outlined in 1993 by the Centers for Disease Control. Seroconversion illness – this occurs in 1 to 6 weeks after acquiring the infection. The feeling is similar to a bout of flu.
2. Asymptomatic infection – After seroconversion, virus levels are low and replication continues slowly. CD4 and CD8 lymphocyte levels are normal. This stage has no symptoms and may persist for years together.
3. Persistent generalised lymphadenopathy (PGL) – The lymph nodes in these patients are swollen for three months or longer and not due to any other cause.
4. Symptomatic infection – This stage manifests with symptoms. In addition, there may be opportunistic infections. This collection of symptoms and signs is referred to as the AIDS-related complex (ARC) and is regarded as a prodrome or precursor to AIDS.
As Sweden marks 30 years since the first case of AIDS was diagnosed in the country. The AIDS epidemic was so shocking for Swedish society because we were a fabulous country that fixed everything and could save the world. The number of people diagnosed with HIV in Sweden since testing began in 1984 is about 7,500. An estimated 4,000 of them are alive today and live in Sweden. HIV infection has been statutorily notifiable in Sweden since 1985. Cases are reported to the regional and national level through an encrypted web-based reporting system. Reports are sent from both the diagnosing laboratory and the clinic, with the clinic also providing epidemiological information.
The Swedish guidelines (SwG) for treatment of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection have several important roles. A major task involves the promotion of a uniformly high standard of care in all HIV treatment clinics in Sweden and the identification of strengths, weaknesses and relevance of recent research findings. CD4+ T-cell counts < 200 cells/microl are clear indications for the initiation of treatment, whereas high viral loads serve as an indication for increased vigilance rather than a criterion for therapy. It is recommended that the first regimen consists of 2 nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors in combination with 1 protease inhibitor or 1 non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor. The definition of treatment failure is rigorous.