Health  Vol.4 No.12 , December 2012
Cognitive behavioral therapy group intervention for HIV transmission risk behavior in perinatally infected adolescents
Purpose: This study analyzed treatment effects of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) group counseling intervention on HIV transmission risk behavior, depression, anxiety, and alcohol use in HIV perinatally infected adolescents attending an HIV clinical care center in Uganda, Africa. Method: A total of 186 adolescents were randomly assigned to an experimental or control arm and assigned into groups of 11 - 16 adolescents. The experimental groups received an 80-minute CBT based weekly intervention for 8 consecutive weeks, while the control groups received only standard group care. Data from self report assessments were analyzed at pre- and post-test using repeated measures of analysis of variance. The participants, analyzed by variable, included 115 for sexual behavior, 106 for depression, 88 for anxiety, and 115 for alcohol use. Results: The results from the study show a large significant difference (p = 0.006) between the experimental and control groups on the anxiety variable. There were no significant differences between the experimental and control groups on the variables of sexual behavior (p = 0.876), depression (p = 0.700), and alcohol use (p = 0.815). There was an indication of reduced levels of HIV sexual transmission risk behavior, depression, and alcohol use levels in the participants in both the experimental and control groups. Conclusions: Risky sexual behavior places HIV perinatally infected adolescents at risk of re-infection, sexually transmitted diseases, and transmitting HIV to their sexual partners. CBT group counseling intervention equipped the participating adolescents with appropriate life skills to deal with psychological distress and anxiety often seen in their lives and may be useful in routine medical care to reduce transmission risks and improve wellness and call for its incorporation into HIV preventive programs and counselor education.

Cite this paper
Senyonyi, R. , Underwood, L. , Suarez, E. , Musisi, S. and Grande, T. (2012) Cognitive behavioral therapy group intervention for HIV transmission risk behavior in perinatally infected adolescents. Health, 4, 1334-1345. doi: 10.4236/health.2012.412195.
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