Fatigue in HIV-Infected People: A Three-Year Observational Study.
CONTEXT: HIV-related fatigue remains the most frequent complaint of seropositive patients. OBJECTIVES: To describe the natural course of fatigue in HIV infection, in a sample (n=128) followed for a three-year period. METHODS: A longitudinal prospective design was used to determine what factors influenced changes in fatigue intensity and fatigue-related impairment of functioning in a community-dwelling sample of HIV-infected individuals. Participants were followed every six months for a three-year period. At each study visit, we collected data on a large number of physiological and psychosocial markers that have been shown to be related to fatigue in HIV-infected people. At three month intervals between study visits, we collected data on fatigue via mailed questionnaires. RESULTS: Fatigue in HIV infection is largely a result of stressful life events, and is closely tied to the anxiety and depression that accompany such events. Fatigue did not remit spontaneously over the course of the study, indicating the need for interventions to ameliorate this debilitating symptom. CONCLUSION: Intervening to help people who are suffering from HIV-related fatigue to deal with stressful life events may help to ameliorate this debilitating symptom.
Barroso, J; Leserman, J; Harmon, JL; Hammill, B; Pence, BW
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