Cognitive Impairment

  • Laura Gheuca Solovastru


It is important that those who care for HIV/AIDS patients be able to separate normal anxiety states from signs of serious psychiatric disorder that require a doctor’s care. Patients experiencing depression, for example, must be warned not to selfmedicate without consulting their treating physician, who can monitor drug interactions. Monitoring is especially critical for a person who is undergoing HAART. Also, caregivers should not let their own feelings prevent them from providing the help needed. An HIV patient who is having many bouts of disturbed sleep, malaise, tearfulness, and constant fatigue may need counseling or medication for depression. One should also remember that chronic pain can be a cause of depression and anxiety, and in HIV, frequent headaches and extremity pain are not unusual.


Frequent Headache Disturbed Sleep Extremity Pain Chronic Anxiety Paranoid Delusion 
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Suggested Reading

  1. Leserman, J. (2008). Role of depression, stress, and trauma in HIV disease progression. Psychosomatic Medicine, 70, 539–545.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Whetten, K., Reif, S., Whetten, R., & Murphy-McMillan, L. K. (2008). Trauma, mental health, distrust, and stigma among HIV-positive persons: Implications for effective care. Psychosomatic Medicine, 70, 531–538.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Suggested Resources

  1. Arehart-Treichel, J. (2011). Experts offer advice on managing HIV neurocognitive impairment. Psychiatric News, 46(5), 18. Retrieved April 24, 2012 from Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of DermatologyUniversity of Medicine and Pharmacy “Gr. T. Popa”IasiRomania

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