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AIDS and Behavior

, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 498–507 | Cite as

Psychosocial Variables Associated with Coping of HIV-Positive Women Diagnosed During Pregnancy

  • Marinda Kotzé
  • Maretha VisserEmail author
  • Jenny Makin
  • Kathleen Sikkema
  • Brian Forsyth
Original Paper

Abstract

To identify psychosocial variables related to the use of coping strategies by HIV-positive South African women diagnosed during pregnancy, structured interviews were conducted with 224 HIV-positive women at antenatal clinics over a period of 2 years. Two coping styles, active and avoidant coping, were assessed using an adapted version of the Brief COPE. Psychosocial variables associated with changes in coping over time were identified with mixed linear analysis. Increases in active coping were associated with decreasing levels of internalized stigma and depression, increasing self-esteem and positive social support, knowing someone who is living with HIV, being physically healthy and living above the poverty line. Increases in avoidant coping were associated with increasing internalized stigma and depression, lower levels of self-esteem, HIV-knowledge and lower levels of education. Recommendations are made for psychological support services to strengthen women’s ability to cope and enhance their health and that of their infants.

Keywords

Coping styles HIV/AIDS Women Pregnancy South Africa 

Resumen

Para identificar factores psicosociales relacionados con el uso de estrategias de afrontamiento en mujeres diagnosticadas con sida durante el embarazo se realizaron cuatro entrevistas estructuradas en dos años a 224 mujeres seropositivas en clínicas prenatales de Tshwane, Sudáfrica. Estilos de afrontamiento activo y de evitación fueron evaluados utilizándose una versión adaptada del Brief COPE. El análisis lineal mixto identificó variables psicosociales asociadas con cambios de afrontamiento en el tiempo. El aumento de afrontamiento activo se asoció con disminución del estigma y depresión, alta autoestima y apoyo social positivo, conocer a alguien con sida, estar físicamente saludable y vivir por encima de la pobreza. El aumento del afrontamiento de evitación se asoció con aumento del estigma y depresión, baja autoestima, conocimiento sobre el sida y bajos niveles educativos. Se presentan recomendaciones a los servicios de apoyo psicológico para fortalecer la capacidad de las mujeres de enfrentar y mejorar su salud y la de sus hijos.

Notes

Acknowledgments

This study was funded by National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) grant R24HD43558. We acknowledge the valuable contribution of the research team: R. Mkhondo, J. Tatane, M. Zondo, J. Ramodike, F. Nkomo, R. Kgoebane, M. Dikolometsa, P. Mabota, B. Moalosi, S. Sono, K. Lehobye.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marinda Kotzé
    • 1
    • 2
  • Maretha Visser
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jenny Makin
    • 3
  • Kathleen Sikkema
    • 4
  • Brian Forsyth
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  2. 2.Safety and Peace Promotion Research UnitMedical Research Council—University of South AfricaTygerbergSouth Africa
  3. 3.Medical Research Unit for Maternal and Infant Health Care StrategiesPretoriaSouth Africa
  4. 4.Department of Psychology and Neuroscience and Duke Global Health InstituteDuke UniversityDurhamUSA
  5. 5.Centre of Interdisciplinary Research on AIDSYale UniversityNew HavenUSA

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