Effects of Hepatitis C and HIV on Cognition in Women: Data From the Women's Interagency HIV Study


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Abstract

Objective:To compare neuropsychological scores in women infected with HIV, women infected with both HIV and hepatitis C, and uninfected subjects.Background:Some, but not all, studies have demonstrated that dual infection with Hepatitis C virus (HCV) and HIV has worse effects on cognition than infection with HIV alone.Design/Methods:The Women's Interagency HIV Study is an ongoing prospective study of the natural history of HIV in women where participants are reevaluated every 6 months. In a cross-sectional analysis, we evaluated the effects of active HIV and HCV infections on scores on symbol-digit modalities test, the Stroop interference test, and trails A and B after controlling for age, ethnicity, education, depression, liver disease, and current or past substance abuse.Results:Data were available for 1338 women—17.8 % had detectable hepatitis C virus and 67% were HIV seropositive. In fully adjusted general linear models, HCV viremia was not associated with scores on any of the cognitive tests.Conclusions:In this large sample of women, active HCV infection was not associated with scores on a small battery of neuropsychological tests.

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