Quick Guide to HIV Testing, Viral Suppression, & First Sign
What is the virus that attacks the T-cells of your immune system and destroys them forever? It is HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus). It is one of the most prevalent infections in the world and is incurable. Once the virus enters your body, it stays for life.
HIV, when left untreated, progresses to become AIDS (Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome). This is when a patient has a damaged immune system, which leaves his/her body prone to opportunistic infections.
If you are doubtful you have HIV, please do not panic. Get tested for HIV in Arlington STD clinic. Although incurable, HIV is manageable thanks to advanced medical science. Anti-retroviral therapy, popularly called ART, has found to be effective in the management of HIV.
Patients of HIV soon become familiar with the term “viral suppression” because their doctor will use it often. It involves decreasing or suppressing the replication and the function of the virus inside your body. This renders it non-contagious and the patient gets a chance to live a quality life.
In case of HIV, doctors regard ART as successful when it manages to reduce the patient’s viral load to a level at which the virus becomes undetectable in blood.
Medically speaking, “viral load” means the number of copies of the virus in every milliliter of the patient’s blood.
Once your viral load is suppressed, you can hope to live a healthier life and resume sexual activity without the fear of infecting your partner.
Exact viral suppression load limit
As per the data submitted by states to the National HIV Surveillance System (NHSS) of CDC (Centers of Disease Control and Prevention), a VL (Viral Load) test result of less than 200 copies of HIV/ml of blood implies viral suppression.
According to a study, it usually takes six months for a patient to come down to this viral load limit. However, the time varies with each patient based on their adherence and tolerance to ART.
How to get tested for HIV in Arlington?
Simply walk in the STD clinic located nearby and ask for a test. You need no prior appointment. The clinic conducts discreet testing. You may even consult a doctor (no appointment for this too). The clinic is open all days of the week and proves to be a cost-effective option to undergo HIV or any STD testing.
Types of HIV
HIV 1 is the most prevalent HIV and is found all over the world. According to a study report, about 95 per cent HIV patients have this type of virus.
HIV 2 is generally found in West Africa. However, as reports tell, this virus is gradually spreading to other areas of the world, particularly in the US, Europe, and India.
First sign of HIV
According to medical studies, the first sign of HIV infection is a skin rash, usually on the upper body area. It is a common sign and should prompt you to get tested for HIV in Arlington or anywhere you live, advise doctors.
Patients on ART may also get rash due to medication. In this case, it is best to discuss this with your doctor, particularly when the rash gets severe.
It is important to be alert of any change you see or feel in your body during ART. Keep in touch with the doctor and have faith in the therapy.
In case you doubt you are exposed to HIV, know how to get tested for HIV in Arlington and do the needful. HIV is a serious infection. Timely treatment can save you from devastating health complications later in life.
Save your immunity; save your life.
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