AIDS Dementia Complex (ADC)

AIDS dementia complex (ADC) is a common complication of the central nervous system that can occur during the later stages of HIV infection. It is associated with a high mortality rate. ADC is characterized by mental, motor, and behavioral symptoms (which is what the term 'complex' signifies). The most noticeable symptom is dementia which is an acquired cognitive decline. In later stages of HIV severe suppression of the immune system occurs which leads to a greater likelihood of acquiring an infection.

It is believed that ADC occurs at a time when the body is vulnerable but that it also is a consequence of HIV and not from exposure to another infection. ADC is typically diagnosed using neuro-imaging such as CAT scans or by testing the cerebrospinal fluid in the brain.

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