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Psychosocial issues affect HIV/AIDS treatment outcomes: UNC researcher
Date:6/18/2008

CHAPEL HILL Psychosocial influences such as stress, depression and trauma have been neglected in biomedical and treatment studies involving people infected with HIV, yet they are now known to have significant health impacts on such individuals and the spread of AIDS, according to a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill scientist.

Now, a comprehensive update on those influences in the current issue of the journal Psychosomatic Medicine offers a wake-up call and should give infectious disease physicians and other healthcare practitioners working with HIV-infected persons information to improve patient outcomes, said Jane Leserman, Ph.D., sociologist, professor of psychiatry in the UNC School of Medicine and co-editor of the special journal issue subtitled "Psychosocial Influences in HIV/AIDS: Biobehavioral Mechanisms, Interventions and Clinical Implications."

"A huge amount of research has been done in our field around these psychosocial influences, yet we felt not all medical professionals working with HIV-infected persons were aware of this body of knowledge," Leserman said. "Our goal was to publish a comprehensive yet succinct review of the important biobehavior research and its impact on patient care.

"We hope this special issue will serve as a catalyst for healthcare providers to address these problems as part of standard HIV care, and to stimulate collaborations between biomedical and biobehavioral clinicians and researchers working as a team to address the quantity and quality of life for these patients."

Psychosomatic Medicine is the journal of the American Psychosomatic Society. The contents of this special issue will be available as an open-access document, free-of-charge to all interested parties at www.psychosomaticmedicine.org following the journal's publication on June 20.

The special issue contains 13 peer-reviewed a
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Contact: Les Lang
llang@med.unc.edu
919-966-9366
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Source:Eurekalert

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