HIV, or Human Immunodeficiency Virus, is a name given to two different species of the Lentivirus. This virus gradually effects the immune system and creates immunodeficiency. A deficient immune system opens the gates for severe illnesses to thrive in the body and potentially cause fatality. HIV does not currently have a cure, but there are treatments that have been shown to be quite effective.

Early detection is an important part

Early detection can thwart the virus. Post-exposure prophylaxis can start to be administered to a patient within 72 hours of potential exposure to HIV. This medicine is taken continuously for a month after initial exposure.

Antiretroviral medications

If a person does test positive for HIV, antiretroviral drugs are the commonplace treatment. Such drugs prevent the immune system from continual damage. There is no one antiretroviral drug which is administered to all HIV patients. Because of the virus’ ability to adapt and resist drugs over time, most HIV positive people take a number of different antiretroviral drugs daily. Three to four different antiretrovirals taken in combination daily seems to be the most effective method for reducing the amount of virus in the body.

Antiretrovirals are a broad category of drugs. The combination of antiretrovirals that HIV patients typically take will be from different categories: entry inhibitors, NNTRIs, NTRIs, or protease inhibitors. These different antiretrovirals stop healthy cells from getting infected at different stages of the virus’ life cycle.

Aside from antiretroviral medications, there has not been a different method of treatment that has been shown to be nearly as effective. Antiretrovirals as a treatment for HIV was not introduced until the late 80’s, and only in the late 90’s was effective combination therapy more fully realized.

Recent literature on the subject of HIV treatment suggests that early detection and treatment can be very successful. A recent study suggested that the sooner an HIV positive patient undergoes medicated treatment, the more likely they are to have an “undetectable viral load” in their bloodstream after 6 months. Patients’ viral levels even remain continually low in the bloodstream for years after discontinuing antiretroviral medicine. Testing the detectability of HIV in the bloodstream is the standard method for measuring the progression and severity of the virus.

AIDS patients

If treatment is delayed, the immune system continues to suffer. This could eventually lead to the development of AIDS, or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. AIDS patients tend to have a life expectancy of about 3 years without treatment after diagnosis. AIDS patients have such a severely compromised immune system, that any opportunistic illness can easily make its way throughout the body and become fatal. While medication can still slow immune system damage, such a late stage of HIV is much more dangerous. Thankfully, people these days generally do not develop AIDS because of the efficacy of antiretroviral drugs in the slowing of HIV.

The most effective treatment for HIV patients depends on early detection. For this reason, it is recommended to get tested for HIV frequently.

  • Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir)


    Generic Kaltera is the combination of two medications: Lopinavir 200mg and Ritonavir 50mg. The combination drug is used with other HIV medications to help control HIV infection. Although this is not a cure for HIV, it helps decrease the amount of HIV in your body so your immune system can work better. It also prevents new HIV complications from happening.

    Kaletra (lopinavir/ritonavir)


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