There is no cure for HIV at present
The body has many built-in defence mechanisms against viruses, but not against HIV. In some patients – HIV never turns into full-blown Aids. There has been one case where a patient who was diagnosed with the HIV virus was supposedly cured of it. Andrew Stimpson, 25, was said to have shaken off the virus with his own immune system after contracting HIV in 2002. His HIV test results have proved negative and this has baffled medical experts as this outcome is extremely rare.
The HIV virus is supressed by anti-viral drugs
Anti-viral treatment consists of a combination of drugs that have to be taken every day for the rest of a person’s life. The aim of anti-viral treatment is to keep the amount of HIV in the body at a low level. This prevents any weakening of the immune system, thus allowing it to recover from any damage that HIV may have caused already.
How do I get a diagnosis?
A blood test is the the most common way to diagnose HIV. The test detects antibodies to the virus that the body has created in an attempt to fight off the virus. If you think that you have been exposed to the virus you should get tested immediately. It can take your body approximately 6 weeks – 1 year to develop antibodies against the virus.
An early blood test is crucial, as anti-viral drugs can start supressing the virus and ward of further health complications.
Contact your health service provider (GP, nurse) for a free anonymous test.