Journal of Behavioral Medicine

, Volume 41, Issue 4, pp 441–449 | Cite as

Psychosocial complications of HIV/AIDS-metabolic disorder comorbidities among patients in a rural area of southeastern United States

  • Dominica Hernandez
  • Seth C. Kalichman
  • Harold P. Katner
  • Kaylee Burnham
  • Moira O. Kalichman
  • Marnie Hill


As people living with HIV experience longer life-expectancies resulting from antiretroviral therapy, comorbid conditions are increasing, particularly metabolic disorders. There is potential for psychosocial factors such as stigma experiences, depression, and alcohol use to complicate both HIV infection and metabolic disorders, including diabetes mellitus and hyperlipidemia. While the impact of these psychosocial factors on HIV infection alone are widely studied, their role in potentially complicating HIV co-morbid metabolic conditions has received little attention. This study examined the association between HIV-related stigma and depression, and the potential role of alcohol use as a mediating factor in a clinical sample of patients with comorbid HIV infection and metabolic conditions. Results demonstrated that HIV stigma is associated with depression and this relationship is in part accounted for by alcohol use. Our results indicate that interventions aiming to improve the health of people living with HIV and co-morbid metabolic disorders should prioritize addressing alcohol use as it is related to sources of stress, such as stigma, and depression.


HIV stigma Comorbidity Metabolic disease Psychosocial complications Depression Alcohol use 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Dominica Hernandez, Seth C. Kalichman, Harold P. Katner, Kaylee Burnham, Moira O. Kalichman, and Marnie Hill declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and animal rights and Informed consent

All procedures were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional research committees and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dominica Hernandez
    • 1
  • Seth C. Kalichman
    • 1
  • Harold P. Katner
    • 2
  • Kaylee Burnham
    • 1
  • Moira O. Kalichman
    • 1
  • Marnie Hill
    • 2
  1. 1.University of ConnecticutStorrsUSA
  2. 2.Mercer University Medical SchoolMaconUSA

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