Factors impacting on antiretroviral therapy compliance in HIV positive adolescents

Title: Factors impacting on antiretroviral therapy compliance in HIV positive adolescents

Author(s): Trocomé, N, Vaudre, G, Dolfus C and G Leverger

Date: September 6, 2002


Is poor treatment observance frequently observed in HIV positive adolescent population, due to the adolescent developmental process, their experience of living with HIV, or lack of information on the disease or treatment?

Methods. – We interviewed the 29 HIV positive adolescents followed up in one pediatric reference center. Confidential interviews were performed according to a standard questionnaire by psychologist and research nurse.

Results. – Seventy-nine percent had stopped at least once a time their treatment who was the major barrier to their sense of freedom behind their adolescence (one-third of them decided to stop it more than one month), although 75% knew the potential consequences and had a good information about their seeks. Fifty-five percent expressed feelings of loneliness or depression, yet 75% consider they had a pleasant life because they had a normal life. In fact, the secret and silence about HIV were the price for this normality.

Conclusion. – Being dependent upon a treatment is a major constraint on the lives of HIV positive adolescents. Although they are fully informed, the deliberate interruption of treatment could attest of their expressed need for autonomy and medical prescription have to be careful with this problem.

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