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Cause

The HIV infection is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

After HIV is in the body, it starts to destroy CD4+ cells, which are white blood cells that help the body fight infection and disease.

Recommended Related to HIV/AIDS

AIDS Wasting Syndrome

AIDS wasting syndrome occurs when you have AIDS and lose at least 10% of your body weight -- especially muscle. You may also have at least 30 days of diarrhea or extreme weakness and fever that's not related to an infection. Not a specific disease, AIDS wasting syndrome is a poorly understood condition of AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome). It is less frequent than in the past, thanks to HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) medications, called HAART. But it is still a significant threat. It...

Read the AIDS Wasting Syndrome article > >

HIV is spread when blood, semen, or vaginal fluids from an infected person enter another person's body, usually through sexual contact, from sharing needles when injecting drugs, or from mother to baby during birth.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: May 16, 2013
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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