Neuromuscular complications in HIV

Susama Verma, Elena Micsa, Lydia Estanislao, David Simpson
Current Neurology and Neuroscience Reports 2004, 4 (1): 62-7
HIV affects many organs of the body, including the nervous system. As a result, a series of neurologic complications have created challenges for scientists and clinicians alike. Among these, HIV-associated neuropathy and myopathy may occur at all stages of the disease process. Of the neuropathies, distal symmetrical polyneuropathy is the most common form. The pathogenesis of primary HIV neuropathy is unknown. Other types of neuropathy seen in HIV-infected subjects include toxic neuropathy, inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, progressive polyradiculopathy, and mononeuritis multiplex. In this review, we present the clinical manifestations, pathogenesis, diagnosis, and management of different types of neuropathy in HIV infection. Myopathy, another complication of HIV, is not associated with any particular stage of immunosuppression. Symptoms include symmetrical weakness of the proximal muscles in the extremities. Serum creatine kinase levels are often moderately elevated. Electromyography and muscle biopsy are helpful tests for diagnosis. Treatment of HIV myopathy includes corticosteroids, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents, and intravenous immunoglobulin.

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