AIDS Dementia Complex

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The Nervous System: AIDS Dementia Complex and Guillain Barre Syndrome Sarah Page Sullivan University Human Anatomy and Physiology Dr. Rita Daniel March 10, 2018 The Nervous System: AIDS Dementia Complex and Guillain Barre Syndrome The neurological or nervous system coordinates all the activities of the body. This system receives information from inside the body and from the environment through different sensory organs and receptors, processes and interprets this information, and sends signals throughout the body to control body functions (Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), 2011). This system is primarily compromised of the central nervous system, which features the brain and the bundles of nerves referred…show more content…
This is especially the case in the late stage of HIV infection. AIDS Dementia Complex (ADC), which is also referred to as HIV-associated dementia, is the most severe form of HANDs (Chow, 2013). This disease affects the central nervous system. This disrupts key functions of the CNS: cognition, mood, motor performance, and behavior. Li et al. (2014) further observed that without optimal treatment, this disease often causes seizures, coma, and death within six months of…show more content…
A lot of scholars agree that this disease is caused by the proliferation of HIV-1 (McGuire, 2003). As highlighted by McGuire (2003), the replication of this viral strain in brain macrophages leads to a high viral burden within the brain. These viruses cause ADC. This hypothesis has been substantiated by studies that have positively correlated HIV encephalopathy with ADC (John Hopkins University, 2018). Some scholars, however, argue that ADC is caused by a macrophage-initiated cascade of events that leads to the degeneration and dysfunction of the brain (McGuire, 2003). To this school of thought, this macrophage-initiated cascade is not influenced by the quantity of viruses in the brain. This second hypothesis is informed by the fact that activated macrophages can produce neurotoxins that trigger the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and oxygen free radicals. As highlighted by McGuire (2003), various in-vitro studies have indicated that these factors can kill human brain cells. In line with this discourse, Pulliam, Gascon, Stubblebine, McGuire, and McGrath (1997) reported significantly higher amounts of a specific subtype of macrophages among patients with ADC as compared to their
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