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    HIV/AIDS: What Raises Your Risk

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    What Increases Your Risk

    Most people get HIV by having unprotected sex with someone who has HIV. Another common way of getting the virus is by sharing needles with someone who is infected with HIV when injecting drugs.

    You have an increased risk of becoming infected with HIV through sexual contact if you:

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    Understanding HIV/AIDS -- the Basics

    AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome) isn't a disease in itself; rather, AIDS is a condition that develops when a person's body has been weakened by HIV (the human immunodeficiency virus). HIV is found in blood and sexual fluids and spreads mainly through unprotected sexual contact and the sharing of hypodermic needles and equipment. When a person becomes infected with HIV, it damages his or her immune system, leading to immunodeficiency; the immune system can no longer fight off common germs...

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    • Have unprotected sex (do not use condoms).
    • Have multiple sex partners.
    • Are a man who has sex with other men.
    • Have high-risk partner(s) (partner has multiple sex partners, is a man who has sex with other men, or injects drugs).
    • Have or have recently had a sexually transmitted disease, such as syphilis.

    People who inject drugs or steroids, especially if they share needles, syringes, cookers, or other equipment used to inject drugs, are at risk of being infected with HIV.

    Babies who are born to mothers who are infected with HIV are also at risk of infection.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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