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Stress management interventions for HIV-infected individuals: review of recent intervention approaches and directions for future research

Authors Brown J, Vanable

Published 8 November 2011 Volume 2011:3 Pages 95—106

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/NBHIV.S17829

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2


Jennifer L Brown1,2, Peter A Vanable3
1Department of Behavioral Sciences and Health Education, 2Center for AIDS Research, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA; 3Department of Psychology, Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY, USA

Abstract: To promote psychological wellbeing and adaptive coping among people living with human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (PLWHA), a number of stress management interventions have been designed and evaluated. This paper reviews recent stress management intervention approaches designed to improve the coping skills of PLWHA and reduce psychological distress. First, a summary of findings from previous narrative reviews and meta-analyses of the stress management intervention literature for PLWHA is provided. Next, recent stress management interventions for PLWHA that fall into one of four categories are reviewed: (a) interventions to improve coping and modify other health behaviors (ie, highly active antiretroviral medication adherence, sexual behaviors), (b) meditation, mindfulness, and relaxation-based stress management approaches, (c) computer-delivered interventions, and (d) interventions that target specific populations including older individuals, individuals with childhood sexual abuse histories, and women. A critique of recent stress management interventions for PLWHA is provided as well as directions for future research.

Keywords: stress management intervention, stress, coping, cognitive behavioral stress management, review, HIV, HIV-positive, HIV-infected, AIDS

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