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AIDS Patient Care STDS. 2006 Feb;20(2):112-21.

Use of multisystemic therapy to improve antiretroviral adherence and health outcomes in HIV-infected pediatric patients: evaluation of a pilot program.

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Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan, USA.


The purpose of the current study was to evaluate a clinical program that used multisystemic therapy (MST) to improve regimen adherence and health outcomes among children with perinatally acquired HIV who exhibited high viral loads in the absence of viral resistance. MST is an intensive, home-based family therapy previously used for the treatment of serious antisocial behavior. Goals of the study were to assess the feasibility of the MST program and its effectiveness for improving health outcomes among children who were treated. The study was conducted by retrospective chart review. Ninety percent of children and families referred to the program accepted the referral and 95% received a full dose of treatment, suggesting high program feasibility. Nineteen children participated in the program. General HIV knowledge on the part of caregivers improved significantly over the course of treatment. Although caregiver-reported adherence did not change, viral loads were found to significantly decrease from referral to the end of MST treatment, with the mean change reflecting a greater than 1 log10 decrease. The majority of children maintained these improvements during the 3 months after treatment termination. Results suggest that MST holds promise as an intervention for improving health outcomes among pediatric patients with HIV.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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