Journal of Gerontological Nursing

Feature Article 

Chemosensory Declines in Older Adults with HIV: Identifying Interventions

David Vance, PhD, MGS, MS, BS; Joe Burrage, PhD, RN

Abstract

Olfactory and gustatory impairments are observed with aging and with HIV infection. Thus, the synergistic effects of aging with HIV infection on olfactory and gustatory declines may be profound. Such declines can jeopardize several areas for an older adult living with HIV such as safety, appetite and malnutrition, cognition, mood, and quality of life. Potential interventions that need to be investigated include hormone replacement therapy, lifestyle changes, medical assessment, and compensation strategies. Nurses are the primary providers of care and education to address sensory alterations of those who have HIV and those who are aging.

Abstract

Olfactory and gustatory impairments are observed with aging and with HIV infection. Thus, the synergistic effects of aging with HIV infection on olfactory and gustatory declines may be profound. Such declines can jeopardize several areas for an older adult living with HIV such as safety, appetite and malnutrition, cognition, mood, and quality of life. Potential interventions that need to be investigated include hormone replacement therapy, lifestyle changes, medical assessment, and compensation strategies. Nurses are the primary providers of care and education to address sensory alterations of those who have HIV and those who are aging.

Authors

Dr. Vance is Research Assistant Professor and Dr. Burrage is Associate Professor, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama.

Address correspondence to David Vance, PhD, MGS, MS, BS, Research Assistant Professor, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Department of Psychology, 100 Holley-Mears Building, 924 19th Street South, Birmingham, AL 35294.

10.3928/00989134-20060701-06

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