Acute Meningoencephalitis in Chronic Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) Infection: Putative Central Nervous System Escape of HIV Replication

Karen A. Wendel, Justin Charles McArthur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


We describe 3 patients with chronic human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection who presented with syndromes compatible with acute meningoencephalitis secondary to HIV; these syndromes were characterized by elevated cerebrospinal spinal fluid (CSF) HIV viral loads and T2-weighted signal abnormalities on magnetic resonance imaging of the brain. After the initiation of or a change in highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), each of the patients had significant and rapid improvement in neurologic symptoms and dramatic reductions in CSF HIV viral loads. Although further investigation is needed, these findings suggest that measurement of CSF HIV viral load and treatment with central nervous system-penetrating HAART should be considered for patients with acute neurologic complaints, chronic HIV infection, and no other identifiable cause of neurologic illness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1107-1111
Number of pages5
JournalClinical Infectious Diseases
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Oct 15 2003


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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