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What are the symptoms of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and how can they be different in older people?

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In older people, the symptoms of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) can be mistaken for the regular process of aging. A few weeks after they're infected, they may have:

It can take as long as 10 years for other symptoms to show up, such as:

  • Cough
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Sweats
  • Weight loss
  • Swollen glands
  • Little energy
  • Loss of appetite
  • Skin rashes, sores in your mouth or genital area, or repeated yeast infections
  • Gut cramps
  • Short-term memory loss

From: How Is HIV Different for Older People? WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Louise Chang on September 15, 2018

Medically Reviewed on 09/15/2018

SOURCES:

National Institute on Aging: "HIV, AIDS, and Older People."

AIDS.gov: "Newly Diagnosed: Older Adults."

Medical News Today: "Inflammation: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment."

CDC: "Depression is Not a Normal Part of Growing Older."

National Alliance on Mental Illness: "Depression."

National Institute of Mental Health: "Older Adults and Depression."

American Psychological Association: "Multimorbidity and depression in HIV-infected older adults."

Reviewed by Louise Chang on September 15, 2018

SOURCES:

National Institute on Aging: "HIV, AIDS, and Older People."

AIDS.gov: "Newly Diagnosed: Older Adults."

Medical News Today: "Inflammation: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment."

CDC: "Depression is Not a Normal Part of Growing Older."

National Alliance on Mental Illness: "Depression."

National Institute of Mental Health: "Older Adults and Depression."

American Psychological Association: "Multimorbidity and depression in HIV-infected older adults."

Reviewed by Louise Chang on September 15, 2018

NEXT QUESTION:

What should I do if I think I have the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and where can I get tested?

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