HIV is probably the best known sexually transmitted virus. An HIV infection that is left untreated will develop into AIDS. The body’s own immune defence no longer works, which makes AIDS fatal.
An HIV infection should be treated promptly. That way, your life expectancy remains comparable to that of a person without HIV. And an HIV-positive person undergoing successful treatment is no longer contagious.
NOTE: An HIV infection should be detected with a test and treated quickly. It’s important to keep the virus from further damaging your immune system. Shortly after the beginning of treatment, the viral load in your blood becomes undetectable, which means that you can no longer infect anyone.
Flu-like symptoms (fever, swollen lymph nodes, fatigue, etc.) after a high-risk situation could be signs of an HIV infection. If that happens, you should go to a counselling centre or see your doctor immediately to discuss a possible HIV infection.