Assessing psychological symptom networks related to HIV-positive duration among people living with HIV: a network analysis

Zheng Zhu, Mengdi Guo, Tingyue Dong, Shuyu Han, Yan Hu, Bei Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study aims to explore and visualize relationships among multiple psychological symptoms among people living with HIV (PLWH) with different HIV-positive durations and to compare centrality indices and densities of psychological symptom networks. We used subsets of data collected from five designated HIV/AIDS hospitals in China. Networks were constructed among 16 psychological symptoms. Centrality properties, including strength and closeness, were adopted to describe relationships among symptoms. The results showed that PLWH with longer HIV-positive durations had denser emotional networks, which indicated that they had more emotional neuroticism than their newly diagnosed counterparts. Sadness, self-abasement, and self-loathing were the most central psychological symptoms across different HIV-positive durations. Our study suggests the need to provide psychosocial support services targeting PLWH according to changing symptom severity and neuroticism trajectories. Interventions should focus on increasing empathy for PLWH and enhancing the ability to consider the situation from different perspectives to avoid the development of neuroticism in long-term survivors.

Keywords

  • HIV-positive duration
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Psychological symptom network
  • symptom management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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