Last updated:09-05-2008
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Definition and causes

HIV infection is caused by infection with HIV (human immunodeficiency virus), And we can have the infection without any symptoms. AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome) is defined as a condition that occurs after one has been infected with HIV and presents itself with various diseases.


HIV is a virus which is transmitted from person to person typically with the blood and through sexual contact. HIV seen both in the homo-and heterosexual environment. In addition, HIV transmitted by contact with used needles and syringes (typically drug addicts), with blood or blood products (see blood ) And from pregnant women to their babies.

Virus entering into a subgroup of the white blood cells called helps T-lymphocytes, which form an important part of the body's immune system. HIV slowly destroys these cells, and the number of healthy cells reduced continuously, while the virus accumulate, which ends with the body's immune system can not fight basic infections. This means that you will develop a range of diseases, which leads to the definitoriske state AIDS.

HIV spreads not by kisses, by drinking from the same glass or borrow each other's towels.

There is every year 300 new cases of HIV infection in Denmark.


If not, a treatment for HIV (see later), will be over around. 10 years to develop some distinctive diseases as a result of the weak immune systems. There is a typical case of infectious diseases and certain types of cancer.

There is decreasing cases of AIDS in Denmark as a result of the new therapies.

Symptoms of HIV

After Monday have been infected with HIV may be around. 1-4 weeks after being infected act following symptoms in half the cases:

  • Fever, sore throat and flu like pain in the joints and muscles.

  • Raised lymph nodes by the neck, armhulen and lysken.

  • Rash.

  • Hjernehindebetændelse with headache and stiff neck.

After this phase are going into a chronic condition, which did not experience any symptoms. However, developed the disease strongly inside the body, as the virus divides and destroys the immune system.

Symptoms of AIDS

When you start to develop signs of infection and cancer after the chronic phase, can we talk about symptoms of AIDS. There are a large number of diseases that are characteristic of AIDS, and this must include include the following diseases, and the related symptoms, the disease is written in italics are definitoriske for AIDS:

  • Fever and a feeling of malaise.

  • Infection with Herpes zoster which gives red and burning rash along the ribs.

  • Kaposi's sarcomawhich is cancervækst from blood vessels due to a type of herpes virus. This shows up as purple-brown spots on the skin and is seen frequently in the face.

  • Pneumocystisk cariniiwhich is a form of pneumonia. There is pain at vejrtækning and dry cough.

  • Infections with the fungus in the mouth and throat. There is pain at synkning.

  • Maligne lymphoma(see Non-hodgkin lymphoma ) Gives uømme swollen lymph nodes, weight loss, night sweats and fatigue.

  • Hjernehindbetændelseseen by infection with kryptokokker (svampeart). There is a headache and stiff neck.

Precautions and diagnosis

If you have had unprotected sex (without the use of condoms) especially with an unknown partner, or have been stuck on unclean needles, it is important to note that the risk of being infected with HIV are present. Developer Monday the above symptoms of HIV, and has been suspected to have been infected with HIV, one should contact a doctor.

If you are infected with HIV, the doctor with a blood sample found that there is a reduced number of white blood cells and sometimes even of the platelets. Furthermore, nuclear material from HIV and HIV antigens. Only 2-12 weeks after one has been infected can measure HIV antibodies in the blood.

If you are infected, you can follow the development of the disease by measuring the number of T-lymphocytes which will gradually decrease.

Treatment of HIV

The current treatment is not curative but can extend life. The treatment is both directed against HIV infection and the infectious diseases that come in the development of HIV. From where the sick one is, how great the amount of virus is, and how reduced the number of T-lymphocytes is, goes to an anti-viral treatment. There are several groups of antivirals, and we are typically 3 substances from at least 2 different groups.

Treatment of AIDS

It also deals with antivirals in the phase of AIDS.

In addition, addresses each of infectious diseases with antibiotics. After over infection is chosen, at times, nevertheless to continue the antibiotic, to prevent new infections.


There is no effective vaccine against HIV.

By far the most smittemåde is sexual. The infection is reduced significantly if you:

  • Using condoms during the whole samlejet. Switching condoms at the new intercourse.

  • Have sex with a solid partner, as we know well.

  • Is the extra attention to the risk of contamination in homosexual environments.

  • Provides detailed information on safe sex in schools.

Furthermore, many cases of HIV transmission in narkomiljøer, where you can:

  • Informing about only using syringes and needles once.

  • Udlevere needles and syringes free of charge.

During pregnancy when the mother is HIV-positive can:

  • Opstarte antiviral treatment.

  • Inform on NOT to breast-feed the child after birth.

Will Monday set in antiviral treatment immediately after they have been exposed to a high risk of contamination (f.eks.ved to poke at a narkomans needle), set up Monday the risk of infection significantly.

Select and complications

Untreated go there around. 8-10 years, from Monday have been infected, to develop symptoms of AIDS. Developer Monday AIDS is the prognosis poor.

Life is significantly extended after it has introduced combination with antivirals. Once it is not known how long to live with this new treatment, but it looks positive. However, there may be adverse reactions to the use of the antiviral medicine, and the consequences are not the doctor's treatment plan carefully, the virus may develop resistance to the medicine.

If you have been found HIV-positive, you can seek out specific assistance teams, which will guide and support to get on with life. It should not be a blood donor, and we must show great care with sexual practices with others.



Related articles:

Hodgkin's disease (Morbus Hodgkin)
Non-Hodgkin malignant lymphoma



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