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May 2002

Viral Infections of the Nervous System, 2002: Update on Diagnosis and Treatment

Arch Neurol. 2002;59(5):712-718. doi:10.1001/archneur.59.5.712

IN THIS review, we will focus on recent developments in the treatment of viral infections of the nervous system. Our emphasis is predominantly on recent advances and new developments in specific antiviral therapy, although some adjunctive therapies are briefly discussed. For ease of discussion, we have grouped infections into categories beginning with those in immunocompetent hosts followed by infection caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and opportunistic infections. We focus exclusively on viral infections that predominantly involve the central nervous system (CNS) rather than those limited to cranial nerves or the peripheral nervous system (eg, Bell palsy and shingles). Currently available antiviral drugs are listed in Table 1 and Table 2, and Web sites containing additional information on viral CNS infections are listed in Table 3.

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