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What is HIV?

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Updated April 22, 2014

Question: What is HIV?
While we all have heard of HIV we also what to know what is HIV? The answer to the question, what is HIV is not as simple as it may sound. But in order to slow the HIV epidemic we knew to answer the question; what is HIV.
Answer:

What is HIV?

HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) is the virus that causes AIDS. This virus is passed from one person to another through blood-to-blood and sexual contact. In addition, infected pregnant women can pass HIV to their baby during pregnancy or delivery, as well as through breast-feeding. People with HIV have what is called HIV infection. Without appropriate therapy, most of these people will develop AIDS as a result of their HIV infection.

These body fluids have been proven to spread HIV:

  • blood
  • semen
  • vaginal fluid
  • breast milk
  • other body fluids containing blood
These are additional body fluids that may transmit the virus that health care workers may come into contact with:
  • cerebrospinal fluid surrounding the brain and the spinal cord
  • synovial fluid surrounding bone joints
  • amniotic fluid surrounding a fetus
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