Experience of chronic noncommunicable disease in people living with HIV: a systematic review and meta-aggregation of qualitative studies

Zhongfang Yang, Zheng Zhu, Lucylynn Lizarondo, Weijie Xing, Shuyu Han, Hui Hu, Yan Hu, Bei Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: An increasing number of people living with HIV (PLWH) have had chronic noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) over the last 5 years. However, robust evidence regarding the perception and challenges of having NCDs among PLWH is limited. Therefore, this study aimed to synthesize qualitative evidence regarding the experiences of PLWH with NCDs. Methods: We used a meta-aggregation approach to synthesize qualitative studies. Peer-reviewed and gray literature published in English and Chinese from 1996 to November 2020 was searched using electronic databases. Two reviewers independently appraised the methodological quality and extracted data from the included studies. The Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) meta-aggregation approach was used to synthesize the findings. Results: In total, 10,594 studies were identified in the initial database search. Fourteen eligible studies were included in the meta-synthesis. Among these studies, nine synthesized findings regarding the following topics were identified: fragmented healthcare systems, care continuity, manifestations of multiple conditions, financial hardship, stigma and discrimination, polypharmacy burden and adherence, reciprocal relationships between HIV and NCDs, and coping strategies. Conclusions: In recent years, attempts have been made to institutionalize NCD preventive and control services in HIV long-term care. However, considering the growing problem of HIV and NCD comorbidity globally, integrated primary health care systems are needed to address the problems of PLWH with NCDs. Healthcare professionals should help PLWH develop strategies to better monitor their polypharmacy burden and adherence, stigma and discrimination, financial hardship, and manifestations of multiple conditions to achieve high levels of care continuity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1651
JournalBMC public health
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • Chronic noncommunicable disease
  • Comorbidity
  • Systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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