The influence of neurocognitive impairment on HIV treatment outcomes among drug-involved people living with HIV/AIDS

AIDS Care. 2012;24(3):386-93. doi: 10.1080/09540121.2011.608794. Epub 2012 Jan 17.


Findings to date indicate that it is feasible to deliver a brief behavioral risk reduction/medication adherence group intervention to HIV-infected injection drug users in a community-based setting. HIV infection and substance abuse can result in neurocognitive impairment and this is directly relevant to intervention development, because a significant number of people living with HIV/AIDS have a positive history of substance abuse and being able to successfully participate in behavioral interventions often requires a relatively high level of cognitive performance. The aim of the current study was to evaluate if changes in information, motivation, and behavior skills with respect to medication adherence, sex- and drug-risk behavior outcomes from baseline to post-intervention are predicted by cognitive impairment following the brief four-session Holistic Health for HIV intervention for HIV-infected Drug Users (3H+). Significant associations were found between change in motivation and certain neurocognitive performance domains. Findings suggest that it may be helpful to specifically tailor such behavioral interventions to accommodate cognitive impairment.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome / drug therapy
  • Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome / psychology
  • Adult
  • Cognition Disorders / complications*
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy
  • HIV Infections / psychology*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Medication Adherence
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Reduction Behavior
  • Substance Abuse, Intravenous / complications*
  • Substance-Related Disorders
  • Treatment Outcome