Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) remains a major cause of neurological disease among South African children despite increasingly efficient perinatal mother to child transmission prevention programmes [1,2]. The neurological disease may be primarily caused via direct infection by the virus as observed in HIV encephalopathy (HIVE) [3]. In addition, HIV infection leads to increased risk of secondary insults to the nervous system in the form of cerebrovascular disease [4], peripheral neuropathy [5] and, most commonly, opportunistic infections such the acute bacterial meningitis [6] or tuberculous meningitis (TBM) [7,8].

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