Early Neuropsychological Change in HIV Infection

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The neuropsychological and psychosocial functioning of 15 Ss infected with HIV+ was examined. Performance by the HIV+ Ss was compared with that of 15 at-risk HIV− Ss. Relative to the HIV− Ss, the HIV+ Ss were impaired on measures of attention, verbal fluency, and visual memory. The pattern of deficit exhibited by the HIV+ Ss was suggestive of a subcortical dysfunction. Despite this, the HIV+ Ss did not exhibit greater levels of psyhosocial impairment. There was no relationship between depression and neuropsychological test performance for the HIV+ Ss. The developemnt of specific criteria for defining impairment when assessing the neuropsychological consequences of HIV infection is recommended.

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