Navigation Links
New research on family-based HIV prevention presented at annual NIH conference

PROVIDENCE, R.I. Researchers from the Bradley Hasbro Children's Research Center (BHCRC) presented exciting new research today at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Annual International Research Conference on the Role of Families in Preventing and Adapting to HIV/AIDS. The three-day conference, held in Providence, R.I. from October 6-8, drew several hundred researchers, clinicians and service providers to discuss the most effective approaches to working with families that are infected or affected by HIV/AIDS. This year's conference theme was "Meeting the Needs of Families in the Mental Health and Criminal Justice Systems."

Family intervention key to HIV prevention efforts in kids with mental illness

Previous research has shown that teens in mental health treatment have high rates of risky sexual behavior, such as not using condoms, which can increase their risk for HIV. Now a new study suggests that family interventions are successful in encouraging these teens to engage in safe sex, despite the cognitive and emotional effects of their mental illness.

According to researchers at the Bradley Hasbro Children's Research Center (BHCRC), parental supervision (such as knowing where your child is and what they're doing) and parent-child communication about sex both play important roles in decreasing the HIV and sexual risks of teens with mental health issues.

"It's clear that family involvement is critical in the development of the sexual attitudes and behaviors of teenagers. However, this is particularly important for teens with psychiatric disorders whose decision-making abilities may be hindered by their illness, causing them to engage in risky behaviors that can potentially expose them to HIV," says lead author Wendy Hadley, PhD, of the BHCRC.

More than 700 teens (ages 13 to 18) in psychiatric programs participated in the study, known as Project STYLE (Strengthening Today's Youth Life Experience). Teens were randomized into one of three HIV interventions family-based, adolescent-only, and a general health promotion. The family-based intervention focused on parent-teen sexual communication, condom use skills and assertiveness training around sexual discussions. The adolescent-only intervention was nearly identical except that it did not include parent-teen communication. General health promotion highlighted topics such as smoking, diet and exercise.

Among teens in the study, researchers noted that those who were sexually active used a condom 40 percent of the time and engaged in unprotected sex an average of six times in the previous 90 days. Approximately 15 percent of teens said they had been pregnant or had gotten someone pregnant and 14 percent had a sexually transmitted disease at some point.

When Hadley and colleagues compared the results of the family-based and adolescent-only intervention groups, they discovered that those teens receiving family-based intervention reported more open sexual communication with their parents. This was associated with approximately one-third fewer unprotected sexual acts among those participating in the family-based intervention at the six-month follow-up.

Hadley is also an assistant professor of psychiatry at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Study co-authors were Larry Brown from the BHCRC and Alpert Medical School, Ralph DiClemente from Emory University, Geri Donenberg from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and the Project STYLE study group.

Juvenile offenders may benefit from family-based HIV prevention

Improving a family's ability to appropriately and emotionally respond to one another and be genuinely interested in each other's activities may help reduce risky sexual behaviors among juvenile offenders, say researchers at the Bradley Hasbro Children's Research Center (BHCRC).

"Juvenile offenders are at increased risk for HIV, since they have higher rates of risky sexual behavior and substance abuse and are more likely to have other mental health issues," says lead author Marina Toulou-Shams, PhD, of the BHCRC. "We wanted to take a closer look at the relationship between family factors and HIV risk among this population in hopes of developing more effective family-based HIV prevention interventions."

Tolou-Shams and colleagues examined data collected from 57 teens participating in a pilot HIV prevention intervention program for juvenile drug court offenders. All participants completed a computerized survey designed to measure sexual risk behaviors, parenting issues (including parent-child communication and parental supervision) and family involvement and responsiveness.

Researchers discovered that teens who reported that their families had greater involvement and appropriate responsiveness were more likely to have protected sex. General family functioning, parent-child communication, parental monitoring and positive parenting were not significantly associated with changes in adolescent sexual risk behaviors.

"Novel intervention approaches, such as family-based HIV prevention and a focus on teaching parents and teens how to manage their feelings rather than the more traditional skills-based tactics, may be important in reducing the HIV risk of juvenile offenders," says Tolou-Shams, who is also an assistant professor of psychiatry (research) at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.


Contact: Jessica Collins Grimes

Related medicine news :

1. Stanford researchers find culprit in aging muscles that heal poorly
2. Children of depressed moms do better when dad is involved, SLU researcher finds
3. UCLA researchers identify markers that may predict diabetes in still-healthy people
4. Mayo Clinic researchers discover new diagnostic test for detecting infection in prosthetic joints
5. New research shows how chronic stress worsens neurodegenerative disease course
6. New research explores newborn in-hospital weight loss
7. Research may unlock mystery of autisms origin in the brain
8. Bipolar disorder relapses halved by Melbourne researchers
9. HIVs impact in Zimbabwe explored in new research
10. U.S. Research Funding Continues to Flatten as U.S. Health Costs Climb - in August 31 Science
11. Cell that triggers symptoms in allergy attacks can also limit damage, Stanford researchers find
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... 2015 , ... The National Association of Professional Women (NAPW) honors ... Year Circle. She is recognized with this prestigious distinction for leadership in estate sales ... more than 850,000 members and over 200 operating Local Chapters. , “I’m pleased to ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... Live ... offer individual vision insurance plans on . The multi-carrier insurance exchange ... and review products, allowing consumers to compare, quote and match plans to meet ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... (Meso Foundation) released information for caregivers and held two webinars on topics of ... on demand free of charge at . , With a loved ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... Thermi™, a ... to announce that its ThermiRFR temperature controlled radiofrequency platform has received CE marking ... radiofrequency platform which uses temperature as a clinical endpoint. The technology has ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Fla. (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... opened the driverless vehicle experience this summer, ushering in a new era of ... percent driverless and electric shuttle, will continue to offer guests an up-close look ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... 1, 2015 Express Scripts (NASDAQ: ESRX ) ... IMMY ) to drive access to a low-cost alternative to ... toxoplasmosis that has been recently priced out of reach for ... systems. --> --> Imprimis ... (a form of folic acid) for $1 per capsule for people ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... 2015 Die MEDTEC Japan ... für Entwicklung und Herstellung medizinischer Geräte, ... 2016 in Tokyo ... Foto:- Foto: ... Logo: --> ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , December 1, 2015 ... adds "Endometriosis - Pipeline Review, H2 ... overview on therapeutic pipeline of Endometriosis and ... effective counter strategies to gain competitive advantage. ... targets and MOAs to produce first-in-class and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: