Difference Between HIV and AIDS


Main Difference

HIV and AIDS both are terms used in medical and refer to a sort of ailment in the human body. HIV is a virus which affects an individual’s immune system and reduces it to splinters in case left untreated. Ultimately, it leads towards increasingly susceptible to common viral and bacterial infections in the long run. This deadly stage then called AIDS, which is attributed to a number of compromised immune systems calculated by the count of CD4 cells in the body. HIV usually gets transmitted through sexual intercourse or matting where either of the two persons has this virus in the blood. Not only sexual, but HIV can also transmit through needles after they are inserted into someone’s body if needles have the viruses; however, it does not spread via air, water or a casual touch of a virus affected person, etc. On the other side, only HIV affected persons can have AIDS but it happens as a result of leaving HIV untreated. As far the symptoms are concerned, it is hard to find out whether someone is infected by HIV or not as its symptoms are minute even doctors sometimes are unable to find it out; however, some infected individuals can face serious flu at the beginning of HIV. On the other hand, when there is a constant deterioration seen in someone’s health and dramatic decline is observed, he/she is suspiciously heading towards the last stage of HIV, that is AIDS. For earlier as well as a later stage of the disease, regular testing can be a good way to diagnose by getting oral swab or blood samples of a person. One is a blue moon, it happens that a person’s urine is tested in order to diagnose HIV. Most commonly, Antibody tests are practiced followed by antigen tests, PCR tests, and NAT tests. Treatment of this disease can vary slightly depending on the level of the disease.

Comparison Chart

The same name of the same diseaseThe same name of the same disease
Name of the virus which causes the diseaseName of the disease caused by the virus
Disease Spread
HIV can be transmitted through sexual intercourse and inserting infected needles into the bodCant spread because it is the next stage of HIV
Excessive Influenza is the symptom of HIVAiling Health

What is HIV?

Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection is the fest stage of viral disease in which a person’s immune system gets infected by its virus. HIV is usually transmitted through sexual intercourse where either of the two persons has this virus in the body. It can be transmitted via needles, usually of injections. Its symptoms are hard to trace by a person faces serious flu. Oral swab or blood samples can be tested to diagnose if a person is infected by this virus or not.

What is AIDS?

Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is later and the final stage of HIV. The final stage features severe compromised immune system, as assessed by the count of CD4 cells in the body. Only a person having HIV can be infected by AIDS. If a person gets infected by the last stage of HIV, he/she may face a solemn decline in health, viral infections as well as cancer.


Key Differences

  1. HIV and AIDS are medical terms referring to a single disease
  2. HIV is the first stage where a body’s immune system gets infected; AIDS is later and the final stage of HIV
  3. HIV can be transmitted through sexual intercourse and inserting infected needles into the body; AIDS can’t spread directly as it is the next level of HIV
  4. Excessive Influenza is the symptom of HIV; AIDS can lead towards serious decline in health


These two terms are usually spoken together in places where people do not know much about them but in reality, they are slightly different from each other. Hopefully, this article will help people in getting to know the similar things and the main differences between them which can be of help while diagnosing.

Janet White

Janet White is a writer and blogger for Difference Wiki since 2015. She has a master's degree in science and medical journalism from Boston University. Apart from work, she enjoys exercising, reading, and spending time with her friends and family. Connect with her on Twitter @Janet__White