Assessing and treating forgetfulness and cognitive problems in adults with HIV.

Vance DE, Fazeli PL, Moneyham L, Keltner NL, Raper JL.

Abstract
In addition to the immune system, HIV affects the nervous system and the brain, producing neurological sequelae, often resulting in forgetfulness and cognitive problems. These problems can compromise medication adherence, interfere with instrumental activities of daily living such as driving and managing finances, increase dependency, and decrease quality of life. Cognitive problems emerge due to a variety of reasons; likewise, several evidence-based methods to mitigate causes and compensate for cognitive problems can be used alone or in combination. This article focuses on nonpathological, nondementia forgetfulness and cognitive problems. However, dementia must be considered and assessed as measured by marked cognitive decline over time. Methods for assessing and measuring forgetfulness and cognitive problems are provided. In addition, methods of treating nonpathological cognitive problems are provided, ranging from Recommended for Practice to Not Recommended for Practice. A case study is presented to demonstrate how to implement recommended treatment options.

Copyright © 2013 Association of Nurses in AIDS Care. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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