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Prevalence of HIV associated neurocognitive deficit among HIV positive people in Ethiopia: a cross sectional study at Ayder Referral Hospital

Tilahun Belete
Girmaw Medfu
Ephrem Yemiyamrew


Background: HIV associated neurocognitive deficit impairs motor activity, neuropsychiatric functioning, daily activity and work activity usually due to the immune suppression effect of the virus. Sub-Saharan region including Ethiopia is the region with the highest burden of HIV. However, a few studies are found on this aspect nationally. This study was aimed at determining the prevalence and the factors associated with cognitive impairment among HIV positive people in Ethiopia who attended Ayder Comprehensive Specialized Hospital.

Method: A hospital based cross sectional study was employed on 234 participants selected using systematic random sampling technique. Data was collected thrpugh face-to-face interview, observation and document review. International HIV dementia scale, activity of daily living scale and Hospital Anxiety and Depression scale were used to assess neuro cognitive deficit, activity of daily living, anxiety and depression respectively. The data was analyzed by using SPSS window 20.

Result: About 88% of the subjects were receiving highly active antiretroviral therapy. The magnitude of Neuro cognitive deficit was 33.3% (95% CI; 27.7% - 40.6%). Impairment in the activity of daily living was observed on 9.8% of the participants. Besides, 55.6% and 67.1% had anxiety and depressive disorders respectively. Late clinical stage of the illness (AOR= 4.2 (95% CI; 1.19, 14.44)) and impairment in the activity of daily living were significantly associated with neurocognitive deficit (AOR= 7.19 (95% CI; 1.73, 21.83).

Conclusion: A higher prevalence of neurocognitive deficit was observed that was related to impaired activity of daily living and being in late stages of the illness. Hence, this should be a strong alarm for early detection of the problem and consistent review of the treatment regimen.

Keywords: HIV associated Neurocognitive Deficit, Neuro cognitive deficit, HIV Associated Dementia, Cognitive Impairment, International HIV Dementia Scale, Ethiopia

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 2413-7170
print ISSN: 1029-1857