What is HIV?
HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus, which is the virus that causes HIV infection. The abbreviation “HIV” can refer to the virus or to HIV infection.
AIDS stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. AIDS is the most advanced stage of HIV infection.
On entering the human body, the virus starts attacking the policemen of our body, the lymphocytes, particularly T helper cells (CD4 cells).
When these fighter cells are killed by the virus and their number decreases below a critical number (<200), it manifests as full blown AIDS Acquired immune deficiency syndrome – a disease state with highly compromised immune system.
A rash is a symptom of HIV that usually occurs within the first two months after becoming infected with the virus. Like other initial symptoms of HIV, it’s easy to mistake this rash for a symptom of another viral infection. Therefore, it’s important to learn how to identify this rash and how to treat it.
What is the HIV Rash Looks Like
Hiv Rash is a common symptom of HIV infection. Around 85% of HIV positive individuals will experience a rash at some point in their infection, due to either:
- Acute HIV infection
- A weakened immune system caused by chronic infection
- A bad reaction to anti-HIV medication
If you are worried that your rash might be due to an undiagnosed HIV infection, you can order a HIV testing kit from our team of online doctors and learn your status within 2 days.
Acute HIV rash
Usually the Hiv Rash are maculopapular which gives a red hue to the skin with small elevations on it. The rash is widely distributed in the body .
Early Hiv Rash
Molluscum contagiosum rash
- It presents with firm, pink vesicles with umblications.
- These are 3 times bigger in HIV patients than normal individual.
- It remains for a longer time and cause disfigurement in HIV patients
Molluscum contagiosum in HIV showing umblicated vesicles
Herpes simplex rash
The Herpes simplex rash which occurs concomitantly in a HIV patient during early stages is similar to that of Herpes simplex in normal people.
The rash appears like a red target with well defined border and has slight elevations. The rash contains fluid filled vesicles, which breaks down to form ulcer. It is very painful.
The rash presents with fluid filled bumps which are very painful. The bumps may break down and form crusts on the skin.
Herpes zoster rash showing cluster of fluid filled vesicle on an erythematous base.
The rash caused by anti HIV drugs are similar to that caused by measles. It is red in color of size 2 -10 mm and appears within a week of starting the medication.
Skin rash due to anti HIV drug Lamivudine