Background and objectives
This study examines self stigma levels of patients living with human immune-deficiency virus (HIV), and relation of stigma, anxiety and depression.
Study was conducted in patients (n:71) of Department of Microbiology in Cerrahpaşa Medical School and people who are linked with ‘Association of HIV positive Life’ between June 2015 and December 2016. Sociodemographic form, HIV stigma scale, Beck Anxiety (BAI) and Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) was applied to study group.
Mean age of study group was 32.98 ± 9.41. Fifty three percent (53.5%) of the group was educated more than high school. Mean scores of total HIV-stigma scale was 92.48 ± 19.86, BDI score was 16.9 ± 10.97 (moderate level of depression), and BAI score was 16.57 ± 11.22 (moderate level of anxiety). When HIV-stigma scale, BDI and BAI scores were compared according to sociodemographic and clinical variables; non-disclosure group (n:35) had significantly high scores than disclosure group in BDI (p = 0.032, z = −2.14), BAI (p = 0.007, z = −2.67), total HIV stigma scale (p = 0.004, z = −2.90) and sub-scales of HIV-stigma scale 1 (p = 0.019, z = −2.34), scale 2 (p = 0.022, z = −2.29), scale 3 (p = 0.001, z = −3.39), and scale 4 (p = 0.002, z = −3.16). Besides, HIV-stigma scale 1 (Personalized Stigma) scores of unknown transmission group was significantly more than sexually transmitted group (p = 0.049, z = −1.97). BDI and BAI scores were positively correlated with total HIV-stigma score and all subscores.
This preliminary Turkish study showed that perceived stigma of people living with HIV is correlated with anxiety and depression, partner non-disclosure increase anxiety and depressive mood, and knowing the way of transmission may decrease the anxiety.