Neurologic complications of human immunodeficiency virus infection

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2 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND- Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) results in multiple neurologic complications that are important for neurologists to understand and recognize. REVIEW SUMMARY- Common primary complications include an encephalopathy, sometimes termed acquired immunodeficiency syndrome dementia complex, causing progressive cognitive, motor, and behavioral deterioration. A myelopathy resulting in nonfocal spinal cord dysfunction is often encountered in advanced HIV. Peripheral neuropathy, most typically a painful distal sensory neuropathy, is also frequent, whereas HIV-associated myopathy is an uncommon but important complication. These manifestations must be distinguished from opportunistic complications such as cryptococcal meningitis, toxoplasma encephalitis, progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy, and cytomegalovirus-induced encephalitis and radiculomyelitis. The most common neurologic neoplastic complication is primary central nervous system lymphoma. Current pathophysiologic, diagnostic, and therapeutic strategies for these complications are reviewed. CONCLUSION- HIV treatment and the recognition and treatment of neurologic complications are becoming increasingly successful and important. The clinician must actively consider the unique neurologic complications likely to be encountered in HIV to provide optimal care to patients with HIV.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)54-65
Number of pages12
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1998


  • AIDS
  • AIDS dementia complex
  • HIV
  • HIV neuropathy
  • Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy


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