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J Assoc Nurses AIDS Care. 2012 May-Jun;23(3):195-203. doi: 10.1016/j.jana.2011.06.008. Epub 2011 Sep 15.

Menopause-associated metabolic manifestations and symptomatology in HIV infection: a brief review with research implications.

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Harvard Medical School, Program in Nutritional Metabolism, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA.


Many women living with HIV in the United States have entered or will soon enter menopause. Clinical changes including increased visceral fat, reduced muscle mass, and changes in lipids and bone density are seen across the menopause transition among non-infected women. HIV and antiretroviral therapy use have been associated with similar manifestations, including reduced bone density, and changes in lipid metabolism and body composition. Menopause is also associated with changes in mood, quality of life, and vasomotor symptoms. Similar psychological indices are common among women with HIV, and may worsen during menopause transition. Research investigating the presence and acuity of metabolic, psychological, and vasomotor symptoms among perimenopausal women with HIV is limited. An important, yet unknown consideration for researchers and clinicians is how metabolic and psychological co-morbidities associated with HIV will influence changes associated with menopause in this population. Further research is needed to provide answers to these important questions.

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