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Curr Opin HIV AIDS. 2014 Jul;9(4):325-31. doi: 10.1097/COH.0000000000000071.

Psychosocial, mental health, and behavioral issues of aging with HIV.

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aThe Ontario HIV Treatment Network bDepartment of Psychiatry, University of Toronto cInstitute for Work and Health, Toronto, Ontario dDepartment of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Occupational Health, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec eCentre for Research on Inner City Health, The Keenan Research Centre, Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.



People with HIV continue to live with the health consequences of an episodic illness that limits their ability to fully participate in society, particularly for the growing number of older people living with HIV. The present review describes the recent evidence exploring the psychosocial challenges facing older adults living with HIV.


Aging for people with HIV may be more challenging than for the general population because of HIV-related stigma, loss of friends and social networks, and the detrimental effects that HIV and antiretroviral treatment have on normal aging processes. Older people with HIV are more likely to experience mental health and neurocognitive impairment than their HIV-negative counterparts, as well as more social isolation as a result of decreased social participation and engagement. People develop different approaches for coping with the challenges associated with aging with HIV.


As this field of research evolves, many research gaps need to be addressed, including a better conceptualization and measurement of successful aging and the development of high-quality integrated care, programs, and services tailored to the needs of older people with HIV. A more integrated policy response is needed to improve the psychosocial and economic well being of older people with HIV.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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