Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Body Image and Self-Care (CBT-BISC) in Sexual Minority Men Living With HIV: A Randomized Controlled Trial

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Objective: Body image disturbance is a distressing and interfering problem among many sexual minority men living with HIV, and is associated with elevated depressive symptoms and poor HIV self-care (e.g., antiretroviral therapy [ART] nonadherence). The current study tested the preliminary efficacy of a newly created intervention: cognitive–behavioral therapy for body image and self-care (CBT-BISC) for this population. Method: The current study entailed a 2-arm randomized controlled trial (N = 44) comparing CBT-BISC to an enhanced treatment as usual (ETAU) condition. Analyses were conducted at 3 and 6 months after baseline. The primary outcome was body image disturbance (BDD-YBOCS), and secondary outcomes were ART adherence (electronically monitored via Wisepill), depressive symptoms (MADRS), and global functioning (GAF). Results: At 3 months, the CBT-BISC condition showed substantial improvement in BDD-YBOCS (b = −13.6, SE = 2.7, 95% CI [−19.0, −8.3], p < .001; dppc2 = 2.39); MADRS (b = −4.9, SE = 2.8, 95% CI [−10.6, .70], p = .086; dppc2 = .87); ART adherence (b = 8.8, SE = 3.3, 95% CI [2.0, 15.6], p = .01; dppc2 = .94); and GAF (b = 12.3, SE = 3.2, 95% CI [6.1, 18.6], p < .001; dppc2 = 2.91) compared with the ETAU condition. Results were generally maintained, or improved, at 6 months; although, adherence findings were mixed depending on the calculation method. Conclusions: CBT-BISC shows preliminary efficacy in the integrated treatment of body image disturbance and HIV self-care behaviors among sexual minority men living with HIV.

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