As the infection progresses, it interferes more with the immune system, increasing the risk of developing common infections such as tuberculosis, as well as other opportunistic infections, and tumors that rarely affect people who have working immune systems.
Due to their nonspecific character, these symptoms are not often recognized as signs of HIV infection.
If a woman is untreated, two years of breastfeeding results in an HIV/AIDS risk in her baby of about 17%. Due to the increased risk of death without breastfeeding in many areas in the developing world, the World Health Organization recommends either: (1) the mother and baby being treated with antiretroviral medication while breastfeeding being continued (2) the provision of safe formula.
Lentiviruses share many morphological and biological characteristics.
During primary infection, the level of HIV may reach several million virus particles per milliliter of blood. This weakens the immune system and allows opportunistic infections.
Preventive treatment involves the mother taking antiretrovirals during pregnancy and delivery, an elective caesarean section, avoiding breastfeeding, and administering antiretroviral drugs to the newborn.Between 50 and 70% of people also develop persistent generalized lymphadenopathy, characterized by unexplained, non-painful enlargement of more than one group of lymph nodes (other than in the groin) for over three to six months.Another group consists of those who maintain a low or undetectable viral load without anti-retroviral treatment, known as "elite controllers" or "elite suppressors".The mechanism of CD4 T cell depletion, although apoptosis may also be a factor.During the chronic phase, the consequences of generalized immune activation coupled with the gradual loss of the ability of the immune system to generate new T cells appear to account for the slow decline in CD4 Immune activation, which is reflected by the increased activation state of immune cells and release of pro-inflammatory cytokines, results from the activity of several HIV gene products and the immune response to ongoing HIV replication.and is frequently associated with adverse effects—where zidovudine is used, about 70% of cases result in adverse effects such as nausea (24%), fatigue (22%), emotional distress (13%) and headaches (9%).