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How to Spot HIV/AIDS Fraud

August 28, 2014

Table of Contents


What Is HIV/AIDS Fraud?

HIV fraud is the promotion, advertisement, or sale of products that are supposed to diagnose, treat, or cure HIV when those products have not been proven to be safe and effective for those purposes.

Regular medicine does not yet have a cure for HIV (see Fact Sheet 485). Because it is a serious illness, many people with HIV disease are willing to try almost anything to get healthy. Some unproven treatments may be harmless, but others can be dangerous. For example, one brand of "Brain Wave Synchronizer" caused epileptic seizures.

Be careful when you choose treatments for HIV disease. This fact sheet will help you evaluate treatments and be sure that you're not dealing with an HIV fraud.

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Warning Signs of an HIV Fraud

If you notice any of these warning signs when you consider an HIV therapy, be very careful! The treatment might still be a good one, but you should ask extra questions about it. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.


Common Sense About Unproven Treatments

You might end up spending a lot of money on treatments that don't work. If you believe they are helping you, and you can afford to pay for them, they might be all right. But remember:


Questions You Should Ask

You should be careful about any HIV treatment, and especially if you see any of the warning signs of fraud. It can be difficult to know what's true and what's not, because many legitimate HIV treatments are very expensive and difficult to understand. Here are some questions to ask about HIV treatments:


Take Your Time; Check It Out

Legitimate health care providers should not be opposed if you want to get more information about a new treatment or product. If you ever feel pressured to make a decision about an HIV therapy before you feel ready, don't do it!

Take your time to get more information from sources that you trust, such as:


The Bottom Line

HIV disease is very complicated. No cure has been developed yet. There are many different treatments and products that claim to help people with HIV disease. Some of these have not been carefully tested, and some might even be harmful.

Take your time to evaluate any product or treatment, especially if you see any of the warning signs of an HIV fraud.




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