Difference Between AIDS and HIV

The Difference Between AIDS and HIV is that  HIV is the virus that destroys the immune system while AIDS is the final stage of infection.

Difference Between AIDS and HIV

It is not the same to be infected with HIV than to have AIDS. It is important to know the difference between HIV and being sick with AIDS. They are two very different things that so far many people confuse and here we clarify the issue.

1. HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus)

It is the virus that causes the infection and affects the immune system (defense system), which protects our body.

2. AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome)

It is the stage in which the defense system is not able to protect against opportunistic diseases and environmental microorganisms.


HIV is transmitted sexually, 97% of the total cases; by vertical transmission, 2% (mother-to-child transmission) and by blood, with 1%.

• Sexual route: in sexual intercourse with penetration (anal, vaginal or oral) without a condom. Anal penetration is the highest risk practice, followed by vaginal. When a person has other sexually transmitted infections ( STIs ) the risk of HIV infection increases. Oral sex has a much lower risk, especially without ejaculation.
• Blood route: by sharing syringes, needles, other injection material or any cutting instrument that has been in contact with infected blood.
The exchange of non-sterile sharp and sharp instruments for skin perforations such as those used for tattoos, piercing, acupuncture, ear piercing, etc. It also involves a risk.
• Via mother-child: when the woman is HIV positive, the transmission of the virus can take place during pregnancy, childbirth or breastfeeding.


HIV is not transmitted in everyday contacts: kisses, caresses, public toilets, showers, coughs, sneezing, glasses, cutlery, food, workplaces, schools, gyms, swimming pools …
Nor is it transmitted through saliva, tears or sweat, not from insect bites or from contact with pets. Donating blood does not carry any risk of becoming infected.

The first signs of HIV infection may be swollen glands and signs of the flu. They can occur and disappear a month or two after infection. Severe symptoms may not appear until past months or years.

Some common symptoms when having AIDS when you have opportunistic infections are chills, fever, sweats (especially at night), swollen lymph nodes, weakness, and weight loss.


Antiretroviral drugs reduce levels of HIV in the body so that the immune system can recover and function effectively. Antiretroviral drugs allow many HIV positive people to enjoy a long and healthy life.

The beginning of an antiretroviral treatment to treat HIV infection implies a compromise.
That is, medications should be taken every day and for the rest of the life of the infected. Following treatment is important, especially because not doing so increases the risk of drug resistance.


Antiretroviral treatment can prolong the time between HIV infection and the manifestation of AIDS. Modern polytherapy is highly effective, and a person infected with HIV who is receiving treatment could live a lifetime without developing AIDS.

A diagnosis of AIDS does not necessarily amount to a death sentence. Many people can still benefit from starting antiretroviral therapy, even once they have developed a disease characteristic of AIDS. Better treatments and preventive measures for opportunistic infections have also been developed to improve the quality and lifetime of infected people.

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