Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)

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HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) is a virus that attacks the immune system, the body's natural defense system. Without a strong immune system, the body has trouble fighting off disease.

HIV is treated with medicines that slow or stop the damage to the immune system. If it's not treated, in time HIV will cause AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome).




The Health Encyclopedia contains general health information. Not all treatments or services described are covered benefits for Kaiser Permanente members or offered as services by Kaiser Permanente. For a list of covered benefits, please refer to your Evidence of Coverage or Summary Plan Description. For recommended treatments, please consult with your health care provider.