AIDS and Behavior

, Volume 24, Issue 1, pp 114–141 | Cite as

Self-Disclosure of HIV Status Among Youth Living with HIV: A Global Systematic Review

  • Kemesha GabbidonEmail author
  • Tiffany Chenneville
  • Tiffany Peless
  • Sydnee Sheared-Evans
Substantive Review


Self-disclosure of HIV serostatus by youth has been considered an essential component of HIV prevention and medication adherence efforts. Therefore, a comprehensive investigation of disclosure goals, processes, and outcomes is warranted. We conducted a global systematic review in accordance with the 2015 Preferred Items for Reporting Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis tool to assess HIV self-disclosure among youth ages 13–24. We identified 5881 articles during our initial search. After screening titles and abstracts and examining articles in greater detail, 33 studies (35 articles) were included in the synthesis. The disclosure process model was used to highlight antecedent goals to self-disclosure including common avoidance goals such as fear of rejection and isolation. While disclosure was associated with negative and positive emotional outcomes and improved medication adherence, there remain concerns regarding the impact of self-disclosure on sexual behaviors. Implications for practice and future directions for research are presented.

PROSPERO registration number: CRD42018097250.


Self-disclosure Serostatus HIV Youth PRISMA-P 



The authors would like to thank Hunter Drake and Courtney Janzen for their contributions to this study.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by any of the authors.

Informed Consent

For this type of study, no informed consent is required.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of South Florida St. PetersburgSt. PetersburgUSA

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