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HIV/AIDS and Skin Conditions

Common Skin Diseases Associated With HIV/AIDS

Most patients diagnosed with HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) tend to develop certain skin conditions due to an altered immune system. They become prone to infections like Herpes viruses, Kaposi sarcoma, and others. 

Moreover, the skin conditions associated with low immunity are chronic or long-lasting. They can cause severe bumps that may last very long. Although those bumps may be harmless, they can be infectious and itchy. Some of the skin conditions commonly seen in HIV patients are as follows.

  • Molluscum contagiosum
    It is a skin condition caused by a virus. In such a disorder, bumps or lesions may develop on the upper layer of an individual’s skin. They are generally round in shape and cause no or mild pain. Molluscum contagiosum can spread from an infected person to an uninfected person through direct contact or contact via contaminated objects. Some individuals may also experience redness around the bumps or itching. However, they disappear on their own in some time. Also, medications or therapies like cryotherapy can be used to heal them. Cryotherapy is a process in which low temperatures are used to decrease inflammation.
  • Herpes viruses’ infection
    This is a viral skin condition that is caused by any one or more of the viruses including herpes simplex virus type 1, varicella-zoster virus, herpes simplex virus type 2, cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus, human herpesvirus 7, human herpesvirus 6, and Kaposi’s Sarcoma herpesvirus. The most common symptoms of such an infection are small red bumps (painful), pain or itching, genital irritation, tiny white blisters that don’t heal in a day or two, and redness or swelling. This infection can further be treated using certain antiviral prescription medications such as famciclovir and valacyclovir.
  • Kaposi sarcoma
    It is a skin condition and a type of cancer. Kaposi sarcoma starts in the lining cells of the lymph nodes or blood vessels. This disease may cause some dark-colored lesions on the skin. These bumps or lesions may be accompanied by swelling or redness. Further, the lesions can cause problems to other parts of the body including the liver, digestive tract, and lungs. Kaposi sarcoma can, however, be treated using methods like surgery (including local excision) and prescription medications. Also, radiation therapy and chemotherapy also play a critical role in treating most patients with this disease.
  • Oral hairy leukoplakia
    Even patients who are getting antiretroviral therapy (for example Tenofovir Disoproxil Fumarate and Emtricitabine tablets) can get skin infections like oral hairy leukoplakia. As the name suggests, this condition mainly affects the oral cavity or mouth. Its most common symptom is white-colored hairy lesions on the tongue. This infection does not require any specific ********** or treatment. However, anti-HIV medications like Emfovir tablets can significantly decrease the incidence of such infections.

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