In the initial stages of HIV infection, most people will have very few, if any, symptoms. Within a month or two after infection, individuals may experience a flu-like illness, including:
These symptoms usually disappear within a week to a month and are often mistaken for another viral infection, such as flu. However, during this period people are highly infectious because HIV is present in large quantities in genital fluids and blood. Some people infected with HIV may experience more severe symptoms initially or a longer duration of clinical symptoms, while others may remain symptom-free for 10 years or more.
During the late stages of HIV infection, the virus severely weakens the immune system, and people infected with the virus may experience the following symptoms:
Each of these symptoms can be related to other illnesses. The only way to determine if you are infected with HIV is to get tested.