How is HIV-associated distal painful sensorimotor polyneuropathy treated?

Updated: Aug 08, 2019
  • Author: Florian P Thomas, MD, PhD, MA, MS; Chief Editor: Niranjan N Singh, MBBS, MD, DM, FAHS, FAANEM  more...
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There are no FDA-approved treatments. Treatment options fall into 2 groups: causal and symptomatic. In causal treatment, avoid neurotoxic medications, if possible. Carnitine supplementation may be effective in antiretroviral toxic neuropathy. [26] Correct vitamin B-12 and folate deficiency. Consider thiamine replacement if the patient is malnourished.

Treatment of HIV-associated distal painful sensorimotor polyneuropathy currently focuses on pain management. As in other painful neuropathies drugs from several classes can be used alone or in combination.

Unfortunately, evidence supporting the use of these agents in HIV-related cases is limited. With several of these agents, controlled studies have found them to be well tolerated but not significantly more effective than placebo.

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