Publication Abstract Display
Type: Poster
Title: Strenuous exercise is associated with less neurocognitive impairment in HIV-infected adults.
Authors: Dufour C, Marquine MJ, Rooney A, Badiee J, Ellis RJ, Grant I, Moore DJ, the HNRP Group
Date: 02-06-2013
Abstract:Objective: Little is known about how modifiable lifestyle factors might help ameliorate neurocognitive impairment (NCI) among HIV-infected (HIV+) persons. Several randomized trials have shown that exercise improves NCI in HIV-uninfected adults (Heyn et al., 2004). The objective of the current study was to assess whether engaging in strenuous exercise was associated with less NCI in HIV+ adults. Participants and Methods: Participants were 335 community-dwelling HIV+ adults. On average, participants were 47.8 (10.3) years old and 75% of them were male. The average CD4 count was 570 (304), 26.3% of participants had a detectable viral load, and 86.5% were on antiretroviral therapy. NCI was assessed using a comprehensive standardized neurocognitive battery. A Global Deficit Score was calculated and used to define NCI. Exercise was quantified by time spent engaging in strenuous exercise, described as anything that causes one’s heart to beat rapidly (e.g., running, jogging, lifting heavy weights, etc) in the last 72 hours (hrs). Participants were considered strenuous exercisers if they reported any time engaging in strenuous exercise in the last 72 hrs (n = 83), and they were considered non-strenuous exercisers if they reported no time spent in strenuous exercise in the last 72 hrs (n = 252). Results: Lower rates of NCI were observed in HIV+ participants who engaged in strenuous exercise (15.7%) as compared to those who did not (40.0%; p < .01). More complex models examining those factors associated with NCI in univariate analyses (p < .05) showed that strenuous exercise remained a significant predictor of NCI even when controlling for demographic factors, HIV disease characteristics, physical functioning, and health status. Conclusion: Engaging in strenuous exercise is associated with lower rates of NCI among HIV-infected adults. Further study is needed to assess if exercise as a prescription may prevent or ameliorate HIV-associated NCI.

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