What is HIV-associated vacuolar myelopathy (VM)?

Updated: May 07, 2018
  • Author: Krupa Pandey, MD; Chief Editor: Niranjan N Singh, MBBS, MD, DM, FAHS, FAANEM  more...
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With the introduction of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), vacuolar myelopathy (VM) has become rarer, but it remains the most common chronic myelopathy associated with HIV. VM occurs during the late stages of AIDS, when CD4+ lymphocyte counts are very low, often in conjunction with AIDS dementia complex, peripheral neuropathies, and opportunistic infections or malignancies of the central or peripheral nervous system (eg, cytomegalovirus, progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy, lymphoma).

For patient education information, see the Immune System Center, Dementia Center, and Sexually Transmitted Diseases Center, as well as Dementia Due to HIV Infection and HIV/AIDS.

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