Adherence to Antiretroviral Therapy Among People Living With HIV.

Adherence to Antiretroviral Therapy Among People Living with HIV.

N Am J Med Sci. 2013 Mar; 5(3): 220-3
Achappa B, Madi D, Bhaskaran U, Ramapuram JT, Rao S, Mahalingam S

Acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) is now considered as a manageable chronic illness. There has been a dramatic reduction in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) related morbidity and mortality due to antiretroviral therapy. A high level of adherence (>95%) is required for antiretroviral therapy to be effective. There are many barriers to adherence in both developed and developing countries.The aim of our study was to determine adherence levels and factors influencing adherence to antiretroviral therapy among people living with HIV.Using a cross-sectional study design, 116 HIV positive patients receiving antiretroviral therapy for at least 1 year were interviewed using a semi structured questionnaire. The collected data was analyzed using Statistical Product and Service Solutions (SPSS) version 11.5. Chi-square test was done. A P value of < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.Of 116 participants, 63.7% reported adherence ? 95%. Mean adherence index was 91.25%. Financial constraints, forgetting to take medication, lack of family care, depression, alcohol use, social stigma and side effects to antiretroviral therapy were barriers for adherence in our study.Adherence to antiretroviral therapy in south India is suboptimal. Intensive adherence counseling should be provided to all patients before initiation ofantiretroviral therapy. Health care providers must identify possible barriers to adherence at the earliest and provide appropriate solutions. HubMed – depression


Predictors of medication adherence in elderly patients with chronic diseases using support vector machine models.

Healthc Inform Res. 2013 Mar; 19(1): 33-41
Lee SK, Kang BY, Kim HG, Son YJ

The aim of this study was to establish a prediction model of medication adherence in elderly patients with chronic diseases and to identify variables showing the highest classification accuracy of medication adherence in elderly patients with chronic diseases using support vector machine (SVM) and conventional statistical methods, such as logistic regression (LR).We included 293 chronic disease patients older than 65 years treated at one tertiary hospital. For the medication adherence, Morisky’s self-report was used. Data were collected through face-to-face interviews. The mean age of the patients was 73.8 years. The classification process was performed with LR (SPSS ver. 20.0) and SVM (MATLAB ver. 7.12) method.Taking into account 16 variables as predictors, the result of applying LR and SVM classification accuracy was 71.1% and 97.3%, respectively. We listed the top nine variables selected by SVM, and the accuracy using a single variable, self-efficacy, was 72.4%. The results suggest that self-efficacy is a key factor to medication adherence among a Korean elderly population both in LR and SVM.Medication non-adherence was strongly associated with self-efficacy. Also, modifiable factors such as depression, health literacy, and medication knowledge associated with medication non-adherence were identified. Since SVM builds an optimal classifier to minimize empirical classification errors in discriminating between patient samples, it could achieve a higher accuracy with the smaller number of variables than the number of variables used in LR. Further applications of our approach in areas of complex diseases, treatment will provide uncharted potentials to researchers in the domains. HubMed – depression


Partner Violence and Psychosocial Distress among Female Sex Workers in China.

PLoS One. 2013; 8(4): e62290
Hong Y, Zhang C, Li X, Liu W, Zhou Y

Despite recognized vulnerability of female sex workers (FSW), most data on this population are focused on their HIV and STI prevalence; studies on their experience of partner violence and psychosocial distress are limited, especially FSW in China.A cross-sectional survey was administered among 1,022 FSW recruited from 9 different types of commercial sex venues in Southwest China. Partner violence scales were adapted from WHO’s Women’s Health and Domestic Violence scale and psychosocial distress was measured by five indicators, including alcohol intoxication, drug use, suicidal behavior, depression, and loneliness. Random effects modeling was used to control for cluster effects.About 58% of FSW ever experienced violence from their stable partners, and 45% suffered it from their clients. Partner violence was strongly associated with each of the five measures of psychosocial distress, even after controlling for potential confounders.This study is one of the first to examine the association between partner violence and psychosocial distress among FSW in China. The high prevalence of violence experience and distress in this population suggests urgency for intervention. The public health programs targeting FSW should go beyond the focus on HIV/STI prevention and care for the fundamental health and human rights of millions of FSW in China. HubMed – depression


Is High IQ Protective Against Cognitive Dysfunction in Narcoleptic Patients?

J Clin Neurol. 2013 Apr; 9(2): 118-24
Yoon SM, Joo EY, Kim JY, Hwang KJ, Hong SB

The aims of this study were to elucidate the cognitive functions of narcoleptics and determine whether intelligence protects against cognitive dysfunction and depressive mood in these patients.Sixty-six subjects (33 narcoleptics, 33 controls) were administered a battery of neuropsychological tests and an individual standardized intelligence test. The cognitive functions of the narcoleptic patients and the healthy controls were compared, as were those of high-IQ and mid-to-low-IQ narcoleptic patients.Narcoleptics exhibited significantly lower scores in the Corsi Block-Tapping Test forward and backward, and the digit symbol tests, and significantly higher Beck Depression Inventory scores than the controls. However, verbal attention, verbal-visual long-term memory, and executive function task scores did not differ significantly between patients and controls. The mid-to-low-IQ patient group had lower mean digit span backward test, phonemic and semantic fluency Controlled Oral Word Association Test and Korean version of the Boston Naming Test scores, and a higher total score and general depressive symptoms subscales Beck Depression Inventory score than the high-IQ patient group. However, controls exhibited no IQ-related differences in cognitive performance or depressive mood. Patients in the high-IQ group exhibited impaired visual attention and working memory as compared with controls.The findings of the present study show that narcolepsy patients have deficits in visual attention and visual working memory, and tend to feel more general depressive symptoms but not somatic symptoms than their control, nonnarcoleptic counterparts. In addition, it appears that higher intelligence protects against cognitive dysfunction and depressive mood. HubMed – depression



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