Estimates of the prevalence and incidence of HIV-associated dementia vary widely, depending on the source from which patients are recruited and the criteria used for the diagnosis/5)

A recent prospective study, carried out on a cohort of homosexual men in the United States, found that the diagnosis was made concurrently with that of the initial AIDS-defining illness in 3 per cent of cases, and that the incidence of the dementia syndrome during the first 2 years after the diagnosis of AIDS was 7 per cent per year, with 15 per cent of patients developing dementia during the course of the disease. (10)

Several risk factors for the development of HIV-associated dementia have been reported, including older age, decreased body mass, decrements in haematocrit, and a history of intravenous drug abuse. However, avalaible data are not consistent.

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