DiscoverCounselor Toolbox PodcastTreatment Needs of People with HIV
Treatment Needs of People with HIV

Treatment Needs of People with HIV

Update: 2020-12-06


Treatment Needs of People with HIV

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– Explore the Physical, Affective, Cognitive, Environmental and Relational needs of people living with HIV


– Energy/Fatigue

– Symptoms

– Battling the virus

– Stress

– Medication side effects

– Interventions

– Changes in routines

– Acupuncture

– Nutrition

– Sleep (Sleep hygiene)

– Autoimmune issues

– Balance and coordination

– Environmental modifications

– Stability assistance

– Physical therapy

– Medication interactions

– Gastric upset

– Cardiovascular issues


– Sexual dysfunction impacting pituitary and gonadal hormone levels related to CD4 count

– Hypothyroid

– Hypertension

– Causes of hypertension in people with HIV include chronic inflammation, immune reconstitution, lipodystrophy and stress

– Pain

– Chronic pain in HIV can be caused by infections, cancers, gut problems, or peripheral neuropathy.

– Medication side effects including muscle pain, headache, stomach cramps or kidney stones

– Addiction—Chemical or process

Affective (Individual and family)

– General

– Some HIV medications may cause symptoms of mood disorders and disrupt sleep

– HIV medications can interact with psychotropics that induce or inhibit the enzyme cytochrome P450

– Anger

– About diagnosis

– At others

Affective (Individual and family)

– Anxiety

– Health anxiety (self and others)

– Abandonment fears

– Death anxiety

– Generalized anxiety

– Depression & Grief: Physical, Cognitive, Interpersonal, Financial losses

– Guilt / Shame: About getting or having the disease

– Happiness / Radical Acceptance


– General Needs: HIV Education

– HIV Associated Neurocognitive Disorders (HAND) impacts ~30% of people with HIV


– Safety from

– Infection

– Physical threats

– Employment opportunities

– Discrimination by employers or colleagues

– Loss of physical or cognitive functioning (Reasonable Accommodations)


– Interpersonal challenges

– Loss of social support

– Stigma and discrimination associated with HIV

– Telling others you are HIV positive

– Dealing with death of SOs with AIDS

– Self esteem

– Acceptance

– Love & Belonging

– Significant others

General Intervention

– Physical

– Sleep & Circadian Rhythms

– Exercise

– Nutrition access and education

– Medication compliance

– Access

– Packaging

– Immune system enhancement

– Pain management

– Hormone balancing

– Affective

– Psychological flexibility

– Distress tolerance

– Coping skills

– Happiness

– Cognitive

– Individualized HIV and Health Education

– Scheduling

– Push notifications

– Environmental

– Reasonable accommodations

– Advocacy and public education

– Relational

– Communication skills

– Social support

– Education of social supports


– HIV impacts the person Physically, Affectively, Cognitively, Environmentally and Relationally

– Behavioral health professionals can aid in screening for comorbid/confounding conditions and making referrals as appropriate

– Behavioral health professionals can

– Enhance and maintain motivation for treatment compliance

– Assist in processing powerful emotions related to the diagnosis and associated issues

– Introduce cognitive behavioral tools and strategies to help the person cope

– Educate the individual, SOs and community about HIV transmission and treatment (reduce stigma and improve health behaviors)









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Treatment Needs of People with HIV

Treatment Needs of People with HIV

Charles Snipes