Wednesdays are for jargon: HIV jargon

flower garden

AIDS: Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome

ART: Antiretroviral therapy – the drugs that treat HIV

ARV: Antiretroviral – the class of drugs used for ART

CD4: One of the two kinds of proteins on the surface of human cells. The HIV virus grabs onto that protein to infect the cell. CD4 protein is present on CD4 cells, which are important to immune system function.

CD4 count: the number of CD4 cells (CD4 T lymphocytes) in a sample of blood. For people living with HIV, this count is a measure of how well the immune system is functioning. A higher count is better; people living with HIV who have a CD4 cell under 200 are at risk for developing serious illness.

HIV: Human immunodeficiency virus

PICT: Provider Initiated Counseling and Testing for HIV. When a health care provider suggests HIV testing to a patient.

PrEP: A drug regimen that people at very high risk for HIV take daily to lower their chances of getting infected.

VCT: Voluntary Counseling and Testing for HIV.