Children with HIV can get infections, just like adults. Because a child's immune system is quickly impaired by HIV, children are more likely to get certain infections that children without HIV might not get. Common infections in children with HIV are listed below.
Bacterial infections that are common include pneumonia, ear infections, meningitis (symptoms include fever, vomiting, stiff neck, and irritability), staph (skin infection), salmonella (symptoms include severe diarrhea), and urinary tract infections
Candidiasis (kan-dih-DEYE-uh-suhss) is a yeast infection that can cause diaper rash and infections in the mouth and throat that make eating painful. It can cause swelling and a thick white coating on the mouth, tongue, throat, and esophagus.
Crypto, or cryptosporidiosis (krip-toh-spar-ihd-ee-OH-suhss), happens when you put something in your mouth that has been in contact with the bowel movement (BM) or poop of a person or animal that has crypto. While some people have no symptoms, it can cause diarrhea, stomach cramps, nausea, fatigue, weight loss, appetite loss, vomiting, dehydration, and fever.
CMV, or cytomegalovirus (seye-tuh-meg-uh-loh-VEYE-ruhss), can cause lung problems, slow weight gain, swollen glands, rash, blood problems, infections, and blindness.
HIV encephalopathy (in-sef-uh-LOP-uh-thee) is infection in the brain. The brain swells and can cause seizures, developmental delay, and dementia.
HIV wasting syndrome is the inability to keep weight on because of infections and loss of appetite from HIV.
LIP, or lymphoid interstitial pneumonitis (int-ur-STISH-uhl noo-muh-NYT-uhss) affects the lungs and causes coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, and tightness in the chest. It makes breathing harder and harder. Often, the child is put into the hospital.
MAC, or mycobacterium avium (meye-koh-bak-TUR-ee-uhm AY-vee-uhm) complex, usually infects people through their lungs or intestines. It spreads quickly through the body. Widespread MAC disease causes fever, night sweats, weight loss, stomach pain, tiredness, and diarrhea. MAC germs can be found in most sources of drinking water, like treated water systems, in dirt, and in household dust. MAC disease does not seem to be spread from one person to another.
PCP, or pneumocystis carinii (noo-muh-SISS-tuhss kuh-REYE-nee-ee) pneumonia, is the leading cause of death in HIV-positive children. It attacks the lungs. Symptoms are cough or trouble breathing. Most scientists believe PCP is spread in the air, but they don't know if it lives in the soil or someplace else. Take your child to your doctor right away if she or he has these symptoms.