HIV signs and symptoms occur from 7 to 21 days after a person is infected with the virus if the he/she is not on ART. These sign and symptoms are divided into two groups which are:

About 40% to 50% of HIV patients present with symptoms after one to three weeks. At this stage the body’s immunity is at a state of fighting against the infections and the patient may present with the following symptoms:


This refers to the increase of body temperature above the normal (37ºC). The patient feels cold and may present with tremors.


This is a medical term used to describe the enlargement in the size and/or the number of lymph nodes. It is common in people with HIV and can occur at any stage of the infection.

In HIV patients it commonly develops on either side of the neck, under the jaw or in the armpits or groin. In some cases, the nodes can be very painful when palpated or not and as large as a walnut.


20 to 50 % of patients get itchy body rashes. These may be of different color like red or black, they may also be of different sizes and later burst and leave ulcerative lesions.


They include headache, throat pain, ulcers in the mouth and private body parts. Others may get nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, body weakness and numbness in hands and feet.

The symptoms last for only one to two weeks then followed by latent period. The latency period may last for 3 to 20 years or above. The latency period is followed by various symptoms as explained in the next parts.

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