QUALITY OF LIFE IN HIV- INFECTED PATIENTS
Introduction: Health-related quality of life (HRQOL) is an important way to assess patients well-being. Research can undestand not only AIDS and its intervention effectiveness, but also demographic, social and psychological factors which influence significant life aspects of HIV-infected patients. Literature Review: After mortality in HIV-infected patients declined, partly due to antiretroviral therapy, one important concern was about their quality of life. Research found a strong relation between HRQOL and sociodemographic variables, including age, ethnicity, sex, gender, income and employment. Growing number of studies focused on the association with psychological factors, including social support from friends and family, and depressive symptoms Research results showed differences on support when evaluating modes of transmission of AIDS. Individuals, who contracted it through heterosexual sex, received more help from family and friends and presented also a better quality of life when compared with those who got it through homosexual sex or drug use. The bad quality of life with depressive symptoms are often associated with stigma. This can affect depression, because it detects people who aremore likely to be depressed, while depressed people may have the stigma as a result. t is believed that the coping process related to the acceptance of HIV is a combination these factors. CD4 counts have been used as a marker of this disease progression. Researchers examine the relation between CD4 and quality of life. It was found that the initial state and weekly changes were related to changes in the values of markers and also in changes in physical/mental health. Conclusion: It is believed that greater family support and CD4 cell counts are predictive of better changes in physical/social functioning. And also that elevated depressive symptoms can decreased the well-being and general health perception of HIV-infected patients. This shows the importance of strengthening social support from family as well as identification and treatment of depression.