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AIDS Read. 2005 Jul;15(7):341-4, 348-9, 354.

Diagnostic utility of the subjective peripheral neuropathy screen in HIV-infected persons with peripheral sensory polyneuropathy.

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Department of Neurology, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.


A retrospective analysis of the Johns Hopkins University HIV neurology database was performed to assess the sensitivity and specificity of the Subjective Peripheral Neuropathy Screen (SPNS) for detecting HIV-associated neuropathies. The SPNS, a 3-item scale that evaluates lower extremity neuropathic symptoms, was administered to 75 patients from the HIV neurology outpatient clinic. Patients graded the severity of each symptom on a scale of 1 to 10, and the sensitivity, specificity, and diagnostic efficiency of the SPNS were calculated for each symptom. The results showed that the SPNS had a sensitivity of 47%, a specificity of 83%, a positive predictive value of 70%, and a diagnostic efficacy of 67%. The SPNS appears to be a useful screening tool for HIV-associated sensory neuropathies; it has a high specificity and a good positive predictive value.

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