Impaired Neurocognitive Performance and Mortality in HIV: Assessing the Prognostic Value of the HIV-Dementia Scale

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This study examined whether global HIV-associated neurocognitive impairment (NCI), assessed with the HIV-Dementia Scale (HDS), predicted mortality in an ethnically diverse sample of 209 HIV-positive adults. Participants were predominantly in the mid-range of illness at baseline, and followed over 13-years. At baseline, 31 (15%) participants scored in the NCI range (HDS ≤ 10); 58 (28%) died during follow-up. Baseline NCI was significantly associated with earlier mortality (HR = 2.10, 95% CI [1.10–4.00]) independent of sociodemographic and HIV disease-related covariates. Less errors on the antisaccade task, an index of executive/attention control, was the only HDS subtest predicting earlier mortality (HR = 0.72, 95% CI [0.58–0.90]). In the absence of an AIDS-defining condition, NCI, particularly in the executive/attention domain, is an independent prognostic marker of mortality in a diverse HIV-positive cohort. These findings highlight the clinical utility of brief cognitive screening measures in this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3482-3492
Number of pages11
JournalAIDS and Behavior
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019



  • Antisaccade
  • HIV
  • HIV-dementia scale
  • Mortality
  • Neurocognitive impairment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases

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