Psychiatric, behavioral and emotional disorders in Polish children and adolescents with perinatal HIV infection
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Warszawski Uniwersytet Medyczny, Klinika Psychiatrii Wieku Rozwojowego
SWPS Uniwersytet Humanistycznospołeczny, Wydział Psychologii
Warszawski Uniwersytet Medyczny, Klinika Chorób Zakaźnych Wieku Dziecięcego
Submission date: 2019-11-20
Final revision date: 2020-03-17
Acceptance date: 2020-05-03
Online publication date: 2021-12-31
Publication date: 2021-12-31
Corresponding author
Anna Zielińska-Wieniawska   

Klinika Psychiatrii Wieku Rozwojowego, Warszawski Uniwersytet Medyczny
Psychiatr Pol 2021;55(6):1387-1404
The aims of the study were to evaluate the prevalence of psychiatric, behavioral and emotional disorders in children and adolescents with perinatal HIV infection and to establish their possible relationships with clinical and sociodemographic variables.

56 children with perinatal HIV infection (PHIV+ group), 24 healthy children perinatally HIV-exposed but uninfected (PHEU) and 43 healthy children of uninfected parents (HIV-nA), aged 6–18 years, were assessed. The Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL/4–18), completed by parents, and the Youth Self-Report (YSR) were used to assess behavioral and emotional disorders, while the semi-structured diagnostic interview K-SADS-PL was used to assess the symptoms of psychiatric disorders.

Higher prevalence of psychiatric disorders was found in the PHIV+ group and the PHEU group compared to the HIV-nAgroup. Anxiety disorders and affective disorders were diagnosed most often. Prevalence of symptoms of emotional and behavioral disorders in the PHIV+ group and in the PHEU group was associated with similar sociodemographic variables (male, not living with the biological caregiver, the experience of stressful life events). Psychiatric disorders were noted more often among PHIV+ subjects whose ARV treatment was started after 12 months of age. Positive correlations were observed between the results of some YSR and CBCL/4–18 problem scales and CD4 counts at the time of the study, higher logarithm of viral load at the start of ARV treatment and at the time of HIV diagnosis.

The prevalence of psychiatric disorders in PHIV+ group and the PHEU group is higher in comparison with HIV-nAgroup. Amore serious course of HIV infection and its severity before treatment are associated with the severity of internalizing problems.

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