Effect of Social Support on Quality of Life, CD4+ T-cell Count and Viral Load of People Living With HIV/AIDS
Background: Social support is an information leading the subject to believe that is cared, esteemed, and is member of a network of mutual obligations. Studies showed that absence of social support could increase vulnerability to diseases. The purpose of study was to analyze the effect of social support on quality of life (QOL), CD4+ T-cell count and viral load of people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) in ambulatorial service. Method: This cohort study was a one-year follow-up with first evaluation between August 2012 and August 2013, the second evaluation between August 2013 and August 2014. The sample was 201 subjects, divided in exposed cohort (N=134), with satisfactory social support, and in not exposed cohort (N=67), with unsatisfactory social support. Data were collected through interviews using instruments: sociodemographic and clinical form, social support scale, and an instrument for assessing quality of life (WHOQOL-HIV-Bref). Findings: PLWHA with satisfactory social support no have changes in mean scores of perception of QOL to overall quality of life/general health perception, and in relation to the physical, psychological, social relationships domains, through environment and spirituality/religion/beliefs. There was difference in level of independence domain (P=0.022), which showed an increase in mean scores related to perceptions of QOL. In the analysis of CD4+ T-cell count and viral load there was no statistically significant difference to PLWHA with unsatisfactory social support. Conclusions: PLWHA with satisfactory social support had increased mean scores for the level of independence domain, decreased CD4+ T-cell counts and viral loads.
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