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J Clin Exp Neuropsychol. 2011 Mar;33(3):326-34. doi: 10.1080/13803395.2010.518140. Epub 2011 Jan 10.

Effects of traumatic brain injury on cognitive functioning and cerebral metabolites in HIV-infected individuals.

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University of California San Diego, San Diego, CA 92093, USA.


We explored the possible augmenting effect of traumatic brain injury (TBI) history on HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) associated neurocognitive complications. HIV-infected participants with self-reported history of definite TBI were compared to HIV patients without TBI history. Groups were equated for relevant demographic and HIV-associated characteristics. The TBI group evidenced significantly greater deficits in executive functioning and working memory. N-acetylaspartate, a putative marker of neuronal integrity, was significantly lower in the frontal gray matter and basal ganglia brain regions of the TBI group. Together, these results suggest an additional brain impact of TBI over that from HIV alone. One clinical implication is that HIV patients with TBI history may need to be monitored more closely for increased risk of HIV-associated neurocognitive disorder signs or symptoms.

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