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Prenatal Depression Is Common Among Minority HIVers

Prenatal Depression Is Common Among Minority HIVers


A survey of 280 African-American and Latina HIV-positive pregnant women has shown that symptoms of depression are common in these minority populations and are strongly linked with potentially modifiable psychosocial factors. Reporting in the July issue of AIDS Patient Care and STDs, researchers from the University of Miami say they found that pregnant, HIV-positive minority women commonly experience stress, have inadequate partner support, and suffer from social isolation'all of which are closely linked to prenatal depression and can affect birth outcomes. HIV-positive women with poor coping skills were the most likely to experience depression, they say. 'This study further supports the need for proactive clinical screening of HIV-infected, low-income, minority women, especially given potential nonadherence to antiretroviral regimens,' the researchers conclude. Brief patient screenings can help identify women with these psychosocial vulnerabilities, which can lead to depression, they say.

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