skip to content

HIV/AIDS Glossary

Immune Reconstitution Inflammatory Syndrome (IRIS)

Synonym(s): Immune Reconstitution Syndrome, Immune Restoration Disease

In HIV infection, an exaggerated inflammatory reaction to a disease-causing microorganism that sometimes occurs when the immune system begins to recover following treatment with antiretroviral (ARV) drugs. Immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome (IRIS) occurs in two forms: "unmasking" IRIS refers to the flare-up of an underlying, previously undiagnosed infection soon after antiretroviral therapy (ART) is started; "paradoxical" IRIS refers to the worsening of a previously treated infection after ART is started. IRIS can be mild or life-threatening.

Search the Glossary

What's this?

Print

AIDSinfo Glossary App

Download Glossary