Neuropyschological dysfunction, ranging from mild cerebral indicators to dementia has been a consistent part
of the medical picture of HIV/AIDS. However, advances in medical supervision, particularly as a result of antiretroviral
(ARV) treatment, have resulted in some mitigation of the neuropsychological effects of HIV and necessitate re-evaluation
of the pattern and nature of HIV-related cognitive or mental deficits. The associated enhancements in morbidity and
mortality that have occurred as a result of ARV medication have led to a need for interventions and programs that
maintain behaviors that are healthy and stop the resurgence of the risk of HIV transmission. Risk factors such as mental
illness and substance use that may have contributed to the initial infection with HIV still need consideration. These risk
factors may also increase neuropsychological dysfunction and impact observance of prevention for treatment and
recommendations. Explicitly, a better comprehension of the role of substance use on the progression of HIV-related
mental decline can enlighten management and evaluation of persons living with HIV with concurrent disorders of
substance use. This review provides a summary of the neurophyschology of substance use and HIV and the existing
research that has looked at the effects of both substance use and HIV disease on neurophyscological function and
suggestions for future research and treatment.
Keywords: Future research, HIV, neuropsychology, substance abuse, treatment.
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