HIV Testing

HIV (the human immunodeficiency virus) is the virus that causes AIDS. It works by targeting and deteriorating the body’s own immune system. The body, as a result, loses its internal protection forces has a much more challenging time dealing with all types of infections and diseases. Since many HIV symptoms do not turn up for a very long time (or do not show up at all), people can be infected with it, passing it to others, and not even aware. The only way to accurately determine if one is infected is through one of several types of HIV Testing.

Should I Be Tested for HIV?

HIV Testing is recommended for whoever has engaged in risky acts like sharing needles or unprotected sex.

How is HIV spread?

Most often, HIV spreads via sex with a companion who’s presently infected with the virus. The virus makes its way into one’s body via the vaginal lining, penis, mouth, or rectum.

HIV can be spread by directly coming into contact with HIV infected blood.

Females can spread HIV to their babies while pregnant or through delivery. Close to one-quarter to one-third of HIV-infected women will pass the infection to their babies if they don’t get treatment for the virus.

What Type of HIV Testing is Recommended?

HIV/EIA (Elisa)

HIV infection is evaluated through the EIA (enzyme immunoassay). This specific test looks for antibodies made by the immune system whenever an individual is infected with HIV. EIA is not 100% effective right after coming in contact with HIV. The HIV antibody will take time to attain levels the EIA test can detect. Because of this, contact our STD counselor to see if you’re inside the EIA “window period”.

HIV PCR by DNA

This test, always known as the HIV Early Detection Test, can detest the presence of the virus much earlier than any other test. HIV produces genetic material which can be found by the HIV PCR by DNA test. A polymerase chain reaction (PCR) process takes small amounts of the virus’ DNA and multiplies them exponentially. This permits for the tracking of the viral load very soon after original infection.

HIV Symptoms

HIV infection symptoms. Should you be exhibiting any of these symptoms, please call 1-877-516-4380.

  • Dry cough
  • Weight loss
  • Diarrhea lasting more than one week
  • Excessive fatigue
  • Peculiar blemishes or white spots on your tongue, throat or mouth
  • Lymph glands in your armpits, groin or neck that are enlarged
  • Pneumonia
  • Brown, purple, pink or red blotches found on or below skin, inner eyelids, mouth or nose.
  • Depression, loss of memory, or another neurological disorders

It can be hard to say for sure the time length HIV needs to progress to AIDS. This will depend on facets of each individual’s lifestyle, age, and immunity to other illnesses. Also, enhanced antiretroviral medications have increased the time it takes HIV to develop into AIDS.