HIV Anxiety Reduction/Management Program (HAMRT): pilot randomized controlled trial

Charles P Brandt, Daniel J Paulus, Paula Lopez-Gamundi, Charles Green, Chad Lemaire, Michael J Zvolensky
AIDS Care 2019 April 7, : 1-6
Research has indicated that mental health disorders, particularly anxiety, predicts poorer antiretroviral medication adherence among persons living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA). The present study tests a novel six-session Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy-based integrated treatment/management program for PLWHA with concurrent anxiety delivered in community health clinics Houston, Texas. Twenty-Seven PLWHA (Mage  = 48.5, SD = 8.9, 44.4% female) were recruited for a proof-of-concept study and randomized to either an active treatment condition, or a waitlist control condition of equal length. Participants were assessed pre-randomization, at the mid-treatment time point (after three sessions for the active participants and three weeks for the control participants) and post-treatment (six sessions for active participants, six weeks for control participants). Data were examined used Bayesian multilevel models. Results indicated a reliable (99.87% posterior probability of a moderating effect) interaction between active and control groups for depressive symptoms and reliable (99.65% probability) interaction for anxiety symptoms. Results indicated an unreliable interaction for combined antiretroviral therapy adherence. These findings are discussed in terms of the feasibility and potential utility of administering an anxiety-reduction therapy program designed for PLWHA with HIV medication adherence difficulties.

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