Jan 12, 2001
Dr. I get conflicting answers on this question: How far along into HIV infection (if left untreated), would one develop thrush or skin fungal infection? Response from the hotlines say:"that is an opportunistic infection, and that won't take place until after 5 years". Others say longer, and still some say right away. Could you please clear this up?
Response from Dr. Feinberg
There is no one correct answer, in part because even HIV- people can get fungal infections, especially involving the skin and nails. While thrush is a sign of immune deficiency in adults, it is not an AIDS-defining illness, and that may be yet another source of confusion: it's associated with the immune dysfunction caused by HIV, but doesn't constitute "AIDS", which happens after many years of HIV infection. I hope that clears up the confusion. Write back if it doesn't.
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