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"Neurological symptoms" in ARS
Feb 19, 2009

Dr Bob, I have read that neurological symptoms are part of ARS in abotu 12% of cases. I have also read in many of your responses the peripheral neuropathy, or pins and needles and paraesthesia is not consistent with ARS/early HIV. What types of neurological symptoms are present in the 12%? I suppose it includes viral meningitis and GBS, but is that all?

I myself am very worried after a significant exposure and intermittent painful symmetrical pins and needles sensation in my arms and on my trunk since about 1 week after a flu-like illness (which was 5 wks post-exposure and 1 week post-PEP).

Any thoughts?

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

There are a variety of conditions that make up that 12%. They include aseptic meningitis, meningoencephalitis, facial palsy, Guillain-Barré syndrome, brachial neuritis, cognitive impairment, psychosis and yes, peripheral neuropathy too! Please note however, many folks are convinced they have peripheral neuropathy when in reality they do not. For instance your symptoms of "intermittent painful symmetrical pins and needles sensation in my arms and on my trunk . . ." are not at all consistent with HIV-associated peripheral neuropathy!

Hope that helps clarify things a bit.

Dr. Bob



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