AIDS and Behavior

, 13:1046

Lack of Understanding of Acute HIV Infection among Newly-Infected Persons—Implications for Prevention and Public Health: The NIMH Multisite Acute HIV Infection Study: II

Authors

    • HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies, New York State Psychiatric InstituteColumbia University
  • Jenny A. Higgins
    • HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies, New York State Psychiatric InstituteColumbia University
  • Jackie Correale
    • HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies, New York State Psychiatric InstituteColumbia University
  • Jose Bauermeister
    • HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies, New York State Psychiatric InstituteColumbia University
  • Robert Dubrow
    • Center for Interdisciplinary Research on AIDSYale University
  • Mark Bradley
    • HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies, New York State Psychiatric InstituteColumbia University
  • Wayne T. Steward
    • Center for AIDS Prevention StudiesUniversity of California San Francisco
  • David W. Seal
    • Center for AIDS Intervention ResearchMedical College of Wisconsin
  • Kathleen J. Sikkema
    • Duke University
  • Peter R. Kerndt
    • Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, Sexually Transmitted Disease Program
  • Kenneth H. Mayer
    • Brown University/The Miriam Hospital
  • Hong-Ha M. Truong
    • Center for AIDS Prevention StudiesUniversity of California San Francisco
  • Corinna Young Casey
    • HIV Neurobehavioral Research CenterUniversity of California San Diego
  • Anke A. Ehrhardt
    • HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies, New York State Psychiatric InstituteColumbia University
  • Stephen F. Morin
    • Center for AIDS Prevention StudiesUniversity of California San Francisco
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10461-009-9581-7

Cite this article as:
Remien, R.H., Higgins, J.A., Correale, J. et al. AIDS Behav (2009) 13: 1046. doi:10.1007/s10461-009-9581-7

Abstract

Acute/early HIV infection is a period of high HIV transmission. Consequently, early detection of HIV infection and targeted HIV prevention could prevent a significant proportion of new transmissions. As part of an NIMH-funded multisite study, we used in-depth interviews to explore understandings of acute HIV infection (AHI) among 34 individuals diagnosed with acute/early HIV infection in six US cities. We found a marked lack of awareness of AHI-related acute retroviral symptoms and a lack of clarity about AHI testing methods. Most participants knew little about the meaning and/or consequences of AHI, particularly that it is a period of elevated infectiousness. Over time and after the acute stage of infection, many participants acquired understanding of AHI from varied sources, including the Internet, HIV-infected friends, and health clinic employees. There is a need to promote targeted education about AHI to reduce the rapid spread of HIV associated with acute/early infection within communities at risk for HIV.

Keywords

HIV/AIDSAwarenessAcute HIVHIV prevention

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009