Clinicians at Georgetown University have reported the first case of a person living with HIV receiving a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease. Publishing their findings in Alzheimer’s & Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment & Disease Management, clinicians diagnosed a 71-year-old HIV-positive man with Alzheimer’s disease after a PET scan showed deposition of amyloid in the brain.

Some clinicians have theorized that people with HIV might not develop Alzheimer’s because HIV-related inflammation in the brain may prevent the formation of amyloid clumps. This man’s diagnosis may be an indicator of what is to come for an aging HIV population.

The report suggests that some older people living with HIV and dementia may be incorrectly diagnosed with HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) when in fact they are developing Alzheimer’s disease. In addition, some may develop HAND as well as Alzheimer’s disease, experiencing a new form of mixed dementia.

To read a press release about the study, click here.