HIV/AIDS Treatments: An Early Guide to Prevent Severe Consequences

Aarohi Batra
Medically reviewed by
Dr. Kaushal

Review medical content on WOW Rx Pharmacy, so that accurate drug use information is easily accessible to everybody.
Dr. Akansha is a licensed Clinical Pharmacologist. She possesses remarkable knowledge in Pharmacovigilance, prescription analysis, drug information, and drug safety services. Additionally, she is a keen learner and an educator.

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hiv/aids treatments

Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), without early diagnosis and treatment, can lead to the development of AIDS.

This condition has already claimed up to 40.4 million lives, as per the WHO, and is still affecting many people worldwide.

Fortunately, there are medications to control the multiplication of the virus and prevent it from attacking the immune system, called Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAART).

This comprehensive article will elaborate on the HIV/AIDS treatments and their role in increasing the life expectancy of people.

So, let’s delve into the topic and learn more about it.

What are the main HIV/AIDS treatments

Currently, there is no cure for HIV or AIDS.

However, there are many medications to control HIV and prevent severe complications.

These medications for HIV are called Antiretroviral Therapy (ART).

These combination pills are effective in slowing the HIV progression and preventing further destruction of T-cells.

People infected with HIV have to take these treatment regimens every day.

Some of the medications used for HIV treatment are as follows:

  • Non-nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors (NNRTIs)
  • Protease Inhibitors (PIs)
  • Nucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors (NRTIs)
  • Attachment inhibitors
  • Post-attachment inhibitors 
  • Integrase Strand Transfer Inhibitors
Fact:
There are two types of HIV treatments, pills and shots. Pills are FDA-approved medications for people who are just starting their treatment regimens. People with undetectable viral load for at least three months are given shots.

How do HIV/AIDS medicines work

Antibiotics are the primary form of treatmentSource: AlexRaths_from_Getty_Images_Pro
Antibiotics

ART is usually a combination of two or more medications from several drug classes.

These medications block the virus at different stages of the HIV life cycle and protect against further damage to the immune system.

HIV drugs are grouped into different classes, depending on how they fight against the virus. 

Further, each class of drugs targets a specific step in the HIV life cycle. 

The HIV treatment regimen includes medicines from at least two different drug classes. 

Thus, it can effectively prevent the multiplication of HIV. 

The purpose of including drugs from different classes is as follows:

  • The drugs account for individual drug resistance
  • Prevents HIV from creating drug-resistant strains
  • Virus suppression in the blood

However, it is important to note that ART does not cure HIV. 

Rather, it helps people with HIV to live longer and prevents the transmission of HIV.

Warning:
These HIV medications may cause some side effects in people, such as nausea, vomiting, and headache. Consult a healthcare practitioner if you experience any serious side effects.

When should I start HIV/AIDS treatments

As per the World Health Organization, a person infected with HIV must seek prompt treatment.

All people should receive treatment, no matter how long they have been affected by HIV.

Prompt medical attention and treatment can ensure a faster recovery and increased life expectancy.

However, delaying treatment can damage the immune system, making it susceptible to various opportunistic infections and progressing HIV into life-threatening AIDS.

Recommended Article
Read “HIV/AIDS Medication: A Comprehensive Overview of Antiretroviral Therapy” to get a deeper understanding of medications.

How many years do HIV patients live with treatments

hivSource: ktsimage_from_GettyImages
HIV blood sample

With early diagnosis and continued ART treatment, the virus gets suppressed, and people can expect a healthy life expectancy.

According to HIV.gov, more than half of people diagnosed with HIV in the US are living a happy life up to the age of 50 or older.

Therefore, it is necessary to consult a healthcare practitioner and seek medical HIV treatment to prevent further damage to the immune system and faster recovery.

Conclusion

Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) can cause damage to the immune system and pose a threat to an individual’s life.

Fortunately, early diagnosis and HIV/AIDS treatments with combination medications, called Antiretroviral Therapy (ART), are effective in slowing HIV progression.

These treatment regimens include drugs from two or more classes, and a person has to take them daily.

The medication blocks the virus at different stages of the HIV life cycle and protects against further damage to the immune system.

Further, this HIV treatment prevents the virus from creating drug-resistant strains and suppresses it in the blood.

Therefore, an infected person must seek prompt medical treatment no matter how long they have been infected with HIV to increase life expectancy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can HIV treatment cure HIV?

There is no cure for HIV, and the virus can remain in your body. Therefore, you should follow the prescribed dosage of ART treatment for the recommended duration of your treatment. You should ask your healthcare practitioner to guide you further, depending on your HIV status.

Can HIV be treated?

Though there is no cure for HIV, some medications, called ART, can keep the virus in control and prevent damage to the immune system. Early diagnosis of the condition and treatment also increase life expectancy in infected people. You should consult a healthcare practitioner for early treatment.

What are the main treatments for HIV?

The main treatments for HIV are a combination of medicines from two or more drug classes called Antiretroviral Therapy. These medications are available in pills and shots. You can consult a healthcare practitioner and seek early medical treatment for faster recovery.

What are the treatments for HIV AIDS?

The treatment for HIV AIDS includes a combination of prescribed medications called Antiretroviral Therapy. The treatment includes drugs from two or more drug classes. An infected person has to take these medications daily to keep the virus under control and prevent damage to the immune system.

Citations:
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