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Some of the most common early symptoms of HIV include flu-like symptoms, such as fevers, aching muscles, and night sweats. Flu-like symptoms are most likely to occur within the first one to three weeks after infection.
If an HIV infection progresses to late-stage HIV, or AIDS, people can start experiencing more extreme symptoms that signal your immune system is damaged. Some of these more serious symptoms include:
- Thrush, a thick white coating on the inside of your mouth or tongue.
- Yeast infections in women.
- Chronic pelvic inflammatory disease.
- Night sweats.
- Rapid weight loss.
- Dry, deep coughing.
- Dizziness or lightheadedness.
- Increased bruising.
- Firm or swollen glands.
- Skin rashes.
- Unexplained bleeding from the vagina, nose, anus, or mouth.
- Numbness in the hands and feet.
- Loss of control of reflexes or muscles.
Early treatment of HIV can prevent the virus from becoming AIDS in the future. Additionally, we know that patients who have an undetectable viral load from taking their medications cannot pass the virus to others.
You can protect yourself from HIV by taking PrEP, a once-daily pill that is up to 99% effective at preventing HIV.