HIV, the human immunodeficiency virus, kills or damages cells of the body's immune system. The most advanced stage of infection with HIV is AIDS, which stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome.
HIV often spreads through unprotected sex with an infected person. It may also spread by sharing drug needles or through contact with the blood of an infected person.
Women can get HIV more easily during vaginal sex than men can. And if they do get HIV, they have unique problems, including: