Coping styles and illicit drug use in older adults with HIV/AIDS.


Journal Article

The prevalence of HIV infection in older adults is increasing; by 2015, over half of adults living with HIV/AIDS in the United States will be over 50. This study describes the prevalence of drug use and examines psychosocial predictors of drug use in a sample of HIV-infected adults aged 50 and older. Participants were 301 HIV-positive older adults enrolled in a clinical trial of a coping intervention aimed to reduce their depressive symptoms. One-quarter used illicit drugs in the past 60 days (48% any cocaine, 48% weekly marijuana, 44% any other drugs) with an average of 36 days for marijuana and 15 days for cocaine. After controlling for demographics, self-destructive avoidance was positively associated and spiritual coping was negatively associated with drug use. These findings suggest that assessment of drug abuse should be a routine part of care for older patients in HIV clinics. Furthermore, interventions designed to increase spiritual coping and decrease self-destructive avoidance may be particularly efficacious for HIV-infected older adults.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Skalski, LM; Sikkema, KJ; Heckman, TG; Meade, CS

Published Date

  • December 2013

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 27 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 1050 - 1058

PubMed ID

  • 23438250

Pubmed Central ID

  • 23438250

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1939-1501

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1037/a0031044


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States