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AIDS Behav. 2006 Sep;10(5):473-82.

Impact of HIV-related stigma on health behaviors and psychological adjustment among HIV-positive men and women.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology and Center for Health and Behavior, Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York 13244-2340, USA. pvanable@syr.edu

Abstract

HIV-related stigmatization remains a potent stressor for HIV-positive people. This study examined the relationships among stigma-related experiences and depression, medication adherence, serostatus disclosure, and sexual risk among 221 HIV-positive men and women. In bivariate analyses that controlled for background characteristics, stigma was associated with depressive symptoms, receiving recent psychiatric care, and greater HIV-related symptoms. Stigma was also associated with poorer adherence and more frequent serostatus disclosure to people other than sexual partners, but showed no association to sexual risk behavior. In a multivariate analysis that controlled for all correlates, depression, poor adherence, and serostatus disclosure remained as independent correlates of stigma-related experiences. Findings confirm that stigma is associated with psychological adjustment and adherence difficulties and is experienced more commonly among people who disclose their HIV status to a broad range of social contacts. Stigma should be addressed in stress management, health promotion, and medication adherence interventions for HIV-positive people.

PMID:
16604295
PMCID:
PMC2566551
DOI:
10.1007/s10461-006-9099-1
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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