When it comes to Sexually transmitted diseases there are lots of confusion. Same is the case with HIV and AIDS. When someone hears about HIV or AIDS they assume that they are the same things. However, this is far from the truth. The most basic difference between HIV and AIDS is that HIV is a form of a virus. HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. This virus has its impact on humans only, it attacks the immune system of the person. Whereas AIDS is a condition. AIDS stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. When the HIV virus has completely destroyed the condition of the human immune system then it turns in AIDS.
What is HIV?
Our body has a natural defence mechanism to fight off the harmful agents. The HIV or human immunodeficiency virus is a virus that attacks the immune system. Our immune system uses white blood cells to keep the body safe and disease free. However, in case of human immunodeficiency virus, it destroys CD4+ white blood cells that are responsible for body’s protection. This virus leads to HIV infection and till now there is no proper medication available for this condition.
When does HIV infection change to AIDS?
It is important to remember that AIDS is not the cause, it is the result of HIV infection. In the last stage of HIV infection, the body’s immune system fails completely. That condition is termed as AIDS or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. AIDS lead to weight loss, headache and other physical and mental problems. The person suffering from AIDS is prone to any kind of infection or disease as the immune system of the body surrenders completely. These infections are called opportunistic infections.
In a nutshell, the difference between HIV or human immunodeficiency virus and AIDS or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome is that HIV is a virus that is responsible for HIV infection, whereas AIDS is the last stage of HIV infection.