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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 138  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 72-77

Progressive multifocal leucoencephalopathy in HIV/AIDS: Observational study from a tertiary care centre in northern India

1 Department of Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India
2 Department of Radiodiagnosis, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
S K Sharma
Head, Department of Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences New Delhi 110 029
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 24056558

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Background & objectives: Progressive multifocal leucoencephalopathy (PML) is seen mostly in advanced human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. Little is known about the epidemiology and disease course of these patients from India. This study was aimed to determine the frequency of PML in patients with HIV/AIDS, and the clinical features and survival of these patients. Methods: The charts of HIV/AIDS patients with PML seen over a period of five years (2006-2011) at the Antiretroviral treatment (ART) centre at a tertiary care centre in New Delhi, India, were retrospectively reviewed. Results: Of 1465 patients with HIV/AIDS, 18 (1.2%) were diagnosed with PML; four were laboratory confirmed and 14 had consistent clinical and radiological features. PML was the initial presentation of HIV infection in 10 (56%) patients, and 16 (89%) patients had CD4 count less than 200/μl. Insidious onset focal limb weakness (78%) and visual disturbance (28%) were common symptoms. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the brain revealed characteristic white matter lesions in all the patients. The estimated median survival was 7.6 months (95% CI, 0-20 months). Interpretation & conclusions: Our results show that the patients present late to access treatment with advanced immunosuppression at presentation. PML is associated with high morbidity and mortality despite institution of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART). There is a need to address the lacuna in diagnostic and management services for these patients in India.

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