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Depression and self-esteem of patients positive for HIV/AIDS in an inland city of Brazil


Psychiatric disorders are common in the course of HIV infection, and depression is one of the most prevalent. Another consequence is the decrease in self-esteem of the individual, marked by the accumulation and fat loss in areas of the body, one of the side effects of drugs. This study aims to characterize aspects demographics, economics, clinical and epidemiological and identify symptoms of depression and assess self-esteem in individuals with HIV/AIDS at different stages of infection.


Descriptive and quantitative study, conducted in an inland city of Sao Paulo (Brazil). Data were collected through interviews with individuals with HIV/AIDS, using as instruments Beck Depression Inventory, Scale of self-esteem by Rosenberg and a questionnaire with data economic, demographic, clinical and epidemiological data.


We interviewed 75 individuals, and 50.7% were male. The predominant age group was between 29 and 39 years (42.7%), 69.3% reported having been infected through sex; sexual orientation, 92% is held as heterosexual. Identified that 22 (29.4%) had depressive symptoms and as such, 4 (18.1%) with symptoms of mild to moderate, 6 (27.2%) with moderate to severe and 12 (54.5%) with severe symptoms. The self-esteem was identified scores of 14 to 23 of which 34.7% had a score of 16 points, which indicates low self-esteem.


The analysis of data showed that the individuals interviewed are young, most were infected through sexual intercourse and almost 30% had depressive symptoms and low self-esteem. The depression associated with anxiety reflects a detrimental effect on quality of life of the individual with HIV/AIDS, with it's extremely important to invest in media and treatments to relieve pain and suffering of the individual. Regarding self-esteem, their confidence levels influence the personal care and take the individual to not seeking treatment. The correct diagnosis is essential for the proper treatment of these patients to increase adherence and improve the quality of life.

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Correspondence to Lis Neves.

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Open Access This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( ), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Castrighini, C., Gir, E., Neves, L. et al. Depression and self-esteem of patients positive for HIV/AIDS in an inland city of Brazil. Retrovirology 7 (Suppl 1), P66 (2010).

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