Depressive Symptoms and AIDS-Related Mortality Among a Multisite Cohort of HIV-Positive Women

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We examined associations between depressive symptoms and AIDS-related mortality after controlling for antiretroviral therapy use, mental health treatment, medication adherence, substance abuse, clinical indicators, and demographic factors.


One thousand seven hundred sixteen HIV-seropositive women completed semiannual visits from 1994 through 2001 to clinics at 6 sites. Multivariate Cox and logistic regression analyses estimated time to AIDS-related death and depressive symptom severity.


After we controlled for all other factors, AIDS-related deaths were more likely among women with chronic depressive symptoms, and symptoms were more severe among women in the terminal phase of their illness. Mental health service use was associated with reduced mortality.


Treatment for depression is a critically important component of comprehensive care for HIV-seropositive women, especially those with end-stage disease.

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