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HIV/AIDS Skin Lesions

hiv lesions 1

What are HIV Skin Lesions?

For someone who experiences the adverse effects of the human immunodeficiency virus, he/she is likely to develop skin lesions. This type of skin reaction happens when the virus has taken over the body’s immune system. This also means that the immunity has been inadequate and unable to continue further in its functions, which includes fighting different illnesses. While it can be very frightful, certain treatments can be administered to alleviate and prevent these health concerns from happening.

Skin lesions triggered by HIV may surface in many areas of the human body. When you develop such reaction, most of the time it indicates an initial infection of the virus. It appears alongside different symptoms but is manageable. The skin reaction can be painful and itchy. It can also bring about a general sensation of dermal soreness.

Listed below are conditions related to skin illnesses. Commonly, these are recognized as opportunistic medical reactions. Alongside skin lesions, these happen when the body is not able to protect itself from the infection. If you are being pronounced by HIV, ensure that you are able to manage these types of skin reactions properly.

Different Types of Skin Lesions

  • Macule
  • Nodule
  • Blisters
  • Papule
  • Rash
  • Crust
  • Scale
  • Pustule
  • Skin atrophy
  • Scar
  • Ulcers
  • Wheals

In some cases, skin lesion is caused by an inherited infection. However, to know your condition well, it is best to get yourself screened as it can also pose a probable infection of the human immunodeficiency virus.

Skin lesions are easily noticed based on their appearance. Sometimes, it can be scaly or just patches on the skin. It also emerges as bruised skin and swollen parts of the dermal region. If you notice flaky reactions of the skin, it also notifies possible skin lesions. It is easily seen because of its abnormal appearance on the skin surface.

Symptoms of Skin Lesions Involving HIV

Note that the warning included for this skin disease can also be affiliated with other health concerns. However, if you ever experience the following, call for urgent medical aid.

  • Breathing difficulty
  • Skin swelling
  • The appearance of rashes (sometimes itchy and painful)
  • Red patches on the skin surface
  • Skin spots (mostly red in color)
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Sores in the mouth
  • Cold sores
  • Recurrent fever
  • Chills
  • Diarrhea
  • Pain in the muscles
  • Body pain
  • Enlargement of the glands
  • Vision problems
  • Lack of appetite
  • Pain in the joints

There is a special way to at least alleviate these reactions. It is in the form of antiretroviral drugs. Once consumed properly, it will help in diminishing the agony and pain of the mentioned symptoms.

Generally Known Conditions Affiliated to HIV Skin Lesions

Herpes Simplex

Aside from its major skin reactions, such as cold sores, herpes simplex is also considered a triggering factor of skin lesions. Its types include the HSV-1 and HSV-2, with symptoms that could become hostile if treatment is not administered. The infection is described to transmit easily if a person has direct physical contact with an individual having the herpes simplex virus.

Human papillomavirus

HPV or better termed as the human papillomavirus refers to a kind of STI or sexually transmitted infection commonly happening to women in their 40s. Aside from the emergence of skin lesions, warts and other bumps on the skin appear intently after the initial outbreak. Besides age, if a person has contact with someone who has the virus, chances are high for that person to acquire the infection. Thankfully, vaccines are available to prevent HPV’s infectious effects.

Kaposi’s sarcoma

Recognized as cancer of the skin, this causes big masses on the skin surface. Other than the skin, some body organs also show signs of this cancer. Additionally, it brings about the appearance of skin lesions, which are considered very irritating and painful to those who have the disease. This skin cancer is also acquired when an individual has already advanced to AIDS, making it hard to treat it.


If you notice big and small patches on your skin, this may be a sign of Psoriasis. This health concern can alarm the probable dysfunction of the immune system. When this happens, make sure that you can access easy treatment to inhibit the infection from advancing. It can appear on your scalp, knees, elbows, or any region of your body. Medications can be used to at least treat or provide relief to its symptoms.

Seborrheic dermatitis

Affecting the head or the parts near its vicinity is Seborrheic dermatitis. This condition can severely cause skin lesions on the scalp area of the head. It can also emerge in other areas, such as the ears, eyebrows and eyelids, and even the nose. If you haven’t known yet, this condition is what others called dandruff, where it can be very itchy, especially on the scalp area. To solve this health problem, proper hygiene is necessary, which includes taking a bath or a shower on a regular basis.


Aside from being screened for HIV, an individual is examined more clearly and analyzed based on their medical records. If an individual turns out to be positive of the infection, he/she is likely to experience this skin reaction. Additionally, a dermatologist will also examine an individuals’ probable case of skin lesion.

Some instances also observe a certain dermatologist asking an individual to go through a skin biopsy. This way, the dermatologist will have a better diagnosis and result in referring the condition.


In any case, where the skin lesion is affiliated with HIV, it is necessary to apply the efficiency of antiretroviral drugs utilized for treating the infection. To ensure that the skin reaction is less severe, administration of these types of drugs is very much significant. It lowers the chances of skin lesion appearance and other symptoms that may be hostile to its host.

Also, some skin conditions are not resolved in taking medications alone. Topical creams, ointments, and even surgeries may be required to eliminate these stubborn skin reactions. Furthermore, it is still favorable if you have been prescribed the right medication to use by your physician.

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