The profile of women with HIV/AIDS and their adherence to the antiretroviral therapy

The objectives of this study were to characterize the sociodemographic and clinical profiles, health behaviors, beliefs and attitudes towards the disease and treatment of women with HIV/AIDS, outpatients of a university hospital located in the interior of São Paulo state, and to identify the factors that affect their adherence to antiretroviral therapy. The participants were 60 female outpatients of the referred service. The data were collected through semi-structured interviews. The women's mean age was 39.8 (standard deviation of 9.1) years; most of the women had a low education level, lived in deprived socioeconomic conditions, and were in a stable relationship. The most frequent form of infection was through a heterosexual relationship; 55% of the women had abandoned treatment, and their main reasons were the imposed therapeutic schemes, the side effects of antiretroviral drugs, coping with the disease, and the perspective of imminent death; 35% did not meet the adherence criteria, considered as taking 95% of the prescribed antiretroviral therapy.

HIV; Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome; Women; Antiretroviral therapy; highly active; Nursing care


Universidade de São Paulo, Escola de Enfermagem Av. Dr. Enéas de Carvalho Aguiar, 419 , 05403-000 São Paulo - SP/ Brasil, Tel./Fax: (55 11) 3061-7553, - São Paulo - SP - Brazil
E-mail: reeusp@usp.br