The HIV Virus (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) is a progressive virus that attacks the body's immune system, continually weakening their defenses against illness and disease.
HIV leads to the development of AIDS, which is the final stage of the HIV Virus, when the immune system can no longer defend the body against infection. AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) will often lead to a life-threatening illness or infection, or cancer, that will kill it's victim.
From the point of an HIV Positive blood test result to the end stage of AIDS the time varies with each individual, with their health and symptoms, and with their course of treatment. It can range from 5 to well over 10 years and from diagnosis of AIDS, the prognosis is usually 1 to 4 years.
HIV/AIDS can be prevented. Women with the HIV virus who are pregnant should tell their doctor right away... going on the drug AZT during the second trimester can greatly reduce the risks of the baby being born with the HIV Virus. Practice safe sex (use a condom with spermacide until both you and your partner have been tested for the virus, and are assured your will remain monogamous). Don't use IV Drugs. Teach your teens about the importance of safe sex and a drug-free life... their life may depend on it.