AIDS Dementia Complex and HIV-1 Infection: A View From the Clinic



The AIDS dementia complex (ADC) is a clinical syndrome which characteristically presents as a “subcortical dementia” with cognitive, motor and behavioral changes. While the pathogenesis remains puzzling in a number of critical aspects, ADC likely relates in a fundamental way to HIV-1, itself, rather than to a secondary, opportunistic condition. This review focuses on some of the clinical information which bears on the pathogenesis of this syndrome and its relation to HIV-1 infection. This information derives from studies of the clinical character of ADC, its epidemiology and natural history, cerebrospinal fluid analysis, neuroimaging results, clinical correlates of pathological findings and its response to antiviral therapy.