HIV/AIDS Human Immunodeficiency Virus
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is a virus that infects cells of the immune system (called CD4, or T Cells).
These cells fight bacteria and act to defend the body against infection. Once too many of these cells are destroyed by HIV, then the virus can lead to the condition referred to as AIDS (Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome). HIV is both a disease and a bug. When too many CD4 cells are infected by the virus then other harmful bacteria cause infections in all the organs of the body. Normal CD4 counts are 800 to 1,200 per cubic millimeter of blood. Those with HIV have less and those with AIDS have less than 50 CD4 cells in their entire body.
There is no cure for HIV. A combination of medications are used to help fight the virus and to protect you from other infections. When under control, people living with the HIV virus can lead long, healthy lives.