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PURPOSE - To investigate the effects of life events, social support, and coping on anxiety and depression among human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected adolescents. It was hypothesized that higher levels of stressful events would be associated with higher levels of anxiety and depression, but that this association would be moderated by satisfaction with social support and by adaptive coping.
METHODS - HIV-infected adolescents from 16 locations in 13 U.S. cities (N = 230, median age 16.09 years, standard deviation 1.2, range 13-19; 77% females) were recruited into the Reaching for Excellence in Adolescent Care and Health (REACH) project. REACH is the first large-scale disease progression study of HIV(+) adolescents infected through sexual behavior or injection drug use. The adolescent assessment was conducted by audio-computer assisted self-interview. Least squares regressions were used to test hypotheses.
RESULTS - Life events with high impact were associated with higher levels of depression and anxiety. Frequently reported events included: being prescribed medications (74%), family financial problems (61%), and parental alcohol abuse (20%). Contrary to expectations, the buffering hypotheses of social support and adaptive coping were not supported. Satisfaction with social support and adaptive coping methods were both associated directly with lower levels of depression, but no association was detected between these two measures and anxiety.
CONCLUSIONS - Although life event distress was directly associated with psychological distress, neither social support nor adaptive coping seemed to moderate this association. However, both satisfaction with support and adaptive coping were associated directly with depression in HIV-infected adolescents.
The helping transactions that occur in group meetings have been theorized to be important therapeutic mechanisms within mutual-help (or self-help) groups. Hypothesized links between giving and receiving help and psychosocial adjustment were examined in a mutual-help group for individuals with serious mental illness (GROW). Participants' adjustment was assessed at two time points and helping behaviors were measured with observational coding of weekly group interactions during the period between assessments. Frequencies of helping behaviors were used to predict Time 2 adjustment after controlling for initial adjustment. Consistent with the helper therapy principle, giving help to others predicted improvements in psychosocial adjustment; giving advice was a unique predictor. Total amount of help received was not associated with adjustment, but receiving help that provided cognitive reframing was associated with better social adjustment. A predicted interaction suggested that receiving help was related to better functioning when members experienced high levels of group integration.
In this highly technological age, health care providers are called to attend to the patient as a whole person, with dreams and goals and a desire for purpose and meaning in life. In this article, we propose a broadened definition of rehabilitation and a rehabilitation program designed to effect an improvement in the quality of life of each renal patient by aiming to restore meaningful existence in each of their lives. An individualized plan for rehabilitation can be constructed and implemented with far-reaching success when the focus is on the life goals of the patient, whether physical, social, psychological, or intellectual. These programs not only enhance the quality of life of the patient with end-stage renal disease, but are cost-effective, both at the societal level and at the level of the dialysis clinic.
Chronic airflow limitation (CAL) is a problem which causes much disability and the necessity for long-term care. This article discusses the clinical and psychosocial assessment of the patient with CAL as it relates to the goals of management: to optimize airflow; to minimize respiratory failure; to facilitate adaptation to chronic illness; and to develop appropriate coping skills.