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Is there a relationship between AIDS and Kaposi sarcoma?

The type of Kaposi sarcoma that's most common in the United States is epidemic Kaposi sarcoma, which is also called AIDS-related Kaposi sarcoma. People who are HIV-positive have a weakened immune system that makes them more likely to develop infections. This means that the virus that causes Kaposi sarcoma-the Kaposi sarcoma herpesvirus-can more easily infect these individuals with immune systems weakened by HIV. Kaposi sarcoma is "AIDS-defining," meaning that once someone with HIV develops Kaposi sarcoma, it's said that the HIV has officially become AIDS. When Kaposi sarcoma affects people with AIDS, the cancer is much more serious and can quickly become life-threatening.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.