AIDS and Behavior

, Volume 20, Issue 2, pp 243–261 | Cite as

A Systematic Review of HIV Risk Behaviors and Trauma Among Forced and Unforced Migrant Populations from Low and Middle-Income Countries: State of the Literature and Future Directions

  • Lynn Murphy MichalopoulosEmail author
  • Angela Aifah
  • Nabila El-Bassel
Substantive Review


The aim of the current systematic review is to examine the relationship between trauma and HIV risk behaviors among both forced and unforced migrant populations from low and middle income countries (LMIC). We conducted a review of studies published from 1995 to 2014. Data were extracted related to (1) the relationship between trauma and HIV risk behaviors, (2) methodological approach, (3) assessment methods, and (4) differences noted between forced and unforced migrants. A total of 340 records were retrieved with 24 studies meeting inclusion criteria. Our review demonstrated an overall relationship between trauma and HIV risk behaviors among migrant populations in LMIC, specifically with sexual violence and sexual risk behavior. However, findings from 10 studies were not in full support of the relationship. Findings from the review suggest that additional research using more rigorous methods is critically needed to understand the nature of the relationship experienced by this key-affected population.


HIV sexual and drug risk behaviors Migrant populations Trauma Low and middle income countries 


El objetivo de la revisión sistemática actual es examinar la relación entre el trauma y de riesgo de VIH comportamientos entre las poblaciones migrantes forzados y no forzados, tanto de los países de ingresos bajos y medios (LMIC). Se realizó una revisión de estudios publicados entre 1995 y 2014. Los datos fueron obtenidos en relación con (1) la relación entre el trauma y las conductas de riesgo de VIH, (2) enfoque metodológico, (3) los métodos de evaluación y, (4) las diferencias observadas entre los migrantes forzados y no forzados. Un total de 340 registros fueron recuperados con 24 estudios que cumplían los criterios de inclusión. Nuestra revisión demostró una relación general entre el trauma y las conductas de riesgo de VIH entre las poblaciones migrantes en LMIC, específicamente de la violencia sexual y el comportamiento sexual de riesgo. Sin embargo, los hallazgos de 10 estudios no estaban en el apoyo total de la relación. Los resultados de la revisión indican que la investigación adicional utilizando métodos más rigurosos es críticamente necesario para comprender la naturaleza de la relación experimentada por esta población clave afectados.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lynn Murphy Michalopoulos
    • 1
    Email author
  • Angela Aifah
    • 1
  • Nabila El-Bassel
    • 1
  1. 1.Social Intervention Group, Global Health Research Center of Central AsiaColumbia University School of Social WorkNew YorkUSA

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