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AIDS Para leer esta información en español, haga click aquí. How do I know if I’m infected? Can I tell whether someone has HIV or AIDS? How oral sex hiv chance do people infected with HIV develop AIDS?

How many people are living with HIV? Are some people at greater risk of HIV infection than others? How can I reduce my risk of becoming infected with HIV through sexual contact? Is there a link between HIV and other sexually transmitted infections? How can I avoid acquiring HIV from a contaminated syringe?

Should I be concerned about HIV if I am getting a tattoo or piercing? Is there a vaccine to prevent HIV infection? Is there a cure for HIV? Where can I get more information about HIV?

HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. It is the virus that causes AIDS. When a person is infected with HIV, the virus enters the body and then resides and multiplies primarily in the white blood cells—the immune cells that normally protect us from disease. AIDS stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. As HIV grows in an infected person, it damages or kills specific immune cells, weakening the immune system and leaving the person vulnerable to infections and illnesses ranging from pneumonia to cancer.

Only when someone with HIV begins to experience one or more of these conditions or loses a significant amount of immune cells are they diagnosed with AIDS. Soon after infection, some people may develop mild, temporary flu-like symptoms, or persistently swollen glands. Even if you look and feel healthy, you may be infected. The only way to know your HIV status for sure is to be tested for HIV.