CBAM’s work focuses on addiction, HIV and the intersection of the two. While we have heard for decades about the effects of drugs on the brain, we hear less about HIV’s impact on the brain. HIV causes significant inflammation that can damage parts of the nervous system. As with addiction, HIV can cause problems with memory and focus. People with advanced HIV may experience more severe neurological complications, including dementia, but there are ways a person infected with HIV can prevent these complications, such as:

>Taking all antiretroviral medications exactly as prescribed
>Eating a healthy diet
>Staying away from smoking, heavy alcohol use, and drug use
>Maintaining a healthy body weight
>Exercising regularly
>Practicing safe sex
>Getting plenty of sleep

For more information about the neurological complications of HIV, check out the below online resources:

>Johns Hopkins Medicine Health Library

>Cognitive Effects on HIV—Wikipedia Page

>HIV and the brain—Fact Sheet from CATIE


CBAM is a multidisciplinary center that seeks to advance the prevention and treatment of chronic illnesses, especially in communities with health disparities. As part of the UCLA Department of Family Medicine, CBAM works at the intersection of academia and community with a focus on treating addictions and preventing the spread of HIV.

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