Learn More About HIV Treatment

What is HIV? HIV stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus: it is a virus that affects humans and causes a weakening of the immune system, which makes it hard for people to fight off disease or infection if left untreated. HIV is a chronic condition that currently has no cure, however most people live a long, healthy, fabulous life with their HIV managed. 

AIDS is the outcome of chronic HIV infection that can be reversed with ART. It is defined as a disease-fighting CD4 cell count less than the threshold or the presence of an AIDS-defining condition. AIDS-defining conditions are opportunistic illnesses that occur more frequently or more severely because of immunosuppression .

Now, because of combination antiretroviral therapy, AIDS-associated illness is no longer the main cause of HIV-related mortality. Someone with HIV who takes their HIV medication everyday and is considered undetectable (below 20-75 viral copies per drop of blood = undetectable) cannot transmit the virus to their sexual partners. Undetectable = untransmittable. This is called TasP, or treatment as prevention. TasP is a practice that works as prevention for people with HIV to protect their sexual partners.