Columbia University Medical Center
NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital The University Hospital of Columbia and Cornell

HIV/AIDS and Mental Health

HIV

HIV/AIDS raises a number of significant mental health concerns. People living with HIV may experience a range of feelings including fear, denial, anxiety, depression, and sadness. HIV remains a stigmatized condition, adding stress to the everyday lives of HIV-positive individuals and those close to them. The virus, as well as some medications used to treat it, can cause various physical symptoms and conditions that may also have a mental health impact. The challenges of HIV infection are even greater when combined with substance use or other mental health problems. In addition, when AIDS is advanced, dementia and other neurological conditions can arise. And even those who are uninfected may experience stress related to worrying about whether they or their loved ones are at risk.

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