: UNITED STATES: “Diagnosis Disclosure, Medication Hiding, and Medical Functioning Among Perinatally Infected, HIV-Positive Children and Adolescents”

UNITED
STATES:   ”Diagnosis Disclosure, Medication Hiding, and
Medical Functioning Among Perinatally Infected, HIV-Positive Children and
Adolescents”

AIDS Care Vol. 24; No.
9: P. 1092-1096    (09..12):: Sarah K. Calabrese; and
others

Among children and adolescents with HIV, little is known about the
immunological and virological impact of disclosing their diagnosis. In their
cross-sectional study, the authors examined medication hiding as a mediator of
the relationship between disclosure of the diagnosis to friends and three
medical outcomes: CD4+ absolute count, CD4+ percentage and viral load.

The study participants were 25 individuals ages 11-18 who were perinatally
infected with HIV. Participants self-reported diagnosis disclosure and
medication hiding; medical markers were derived from blood samples drawn at the
same clinic visit.

Bootstrapping analyses showed that disclosure to at least one friend (as
opposed to no friends) was associated with less medication hiding; this was
associated with higher CD4+ absolute counts and percentages, but not viral
load.

Among the 19 participants who had disclosed to at least one friend, those who
had disclosed to 11 or more friends (versus one to 10 friends) were less likely
to hide taking their medication, which was associated with higher CD4+ absolute
counts.

“Findings suggest HIV-positive children and adolescents’ diagnosis disclosure
to friends corresponds to less medication hiding, ultimately yielding better
immune functioning,” the authors concluded. “Health care providers should be
cognizant of these potential medical benefits associated with disclosure when
offering support around disclosure decision-making.”

 

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