There is no cure for HIV, but treatment options are much better than they were a few decades ago.
The medicines that treat HIV are called antiretroviral drugs. There are 25 of them in 6 major types, and each uses a different way to fight the virus in your body. Your doctor will probably recommend that you take three different medicines from two of the six categories. Research shows that a mixture of drugs is the best way to control HIV and reduce the chances that it becomes resistant to treatment.
The drugs your doctor prescribes depend on your health history, how well your immune system is working, and even how many pills you want to take each day. You might also get medications for health problems caused by or related to your HIV.
The drugs can have side effects. Often, they go away as your body adjusts to the medication, but many people have some for a short time, including:
pain, numbness, or tingling
Tell your doctor right away about how your medicine affects you, but don’t stop taking it — that can give HIV a chance to get stronger. Your doctor will work with you to manage your side effects, and to see if the drugs cause other issues, like blood sugar and cholesterol problems.