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Could my depression be related to autonomal neuropathy?
Mar 14, 2002

I have a 10 year history of worstening peripheral neuropathy related to HIV. I now have symptoms relating to autonomic functions - difficulty in swallowing & urinating and I am also regurgitating undigested food. I have now been diagnosed with severe clinical depression and anxiety - for which I have been unsucessfuly medicated for 7 months. I cannot think of an immediate cause for my depression. My T-Cell count is very good, I am on no Hiv medications, I have been diagnosed for 17 years and came to terms with this many years ago. Nothing has changed in my immediate environment or relationships and I am not worrying unduly about new symptoms or pain. I have recently been screened by CT for dementia or other causative factors and am clear. Given all of these factors could my depression be directly related to the effects of neuropathy on my nervous system? (ie. medical rather than psychological.) I have asked my clinicians and mental health carers and they simply do not have the information.

Response from Mr. Shernoff

I also do not have the answer to your question. Anything is possible. HIV related CNS involvement does not always show up on scans and can certainly cause symptoms of depression and/or anxiety. I apologize for not being able to shed more light on your condition.

Michael Shernoff, MSW



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