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Self regard and concealment of homosexuality as predictors of CD4+ cell count over time among hiv seropositive gay men

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Living with HIV can challenge core features of a person's sense of identity and ultimately lead to a diminished sense of self regard. Self-regard has been defined as the extent to which a person experiences an integrated sense of identity. Gay men with HIV may also face struggles related to their identity in deciding whether to disclose or conceal their homosexuality. This study examined whether concealment of homosexuality and a person's sense of self regard would be associated with CD4+ cell count over time among HIV seropositive gay men. 53 HIV seropositive gay men completed questionnaires at one time point. CD4+ cell counts were measured at the time of questionnaire completion and 24 months later. Greater self regard at baseline was associated with higher CD4+ counts at 24 months. The association between baseline self regard and CD4+ count at 24 months was strongest among persons with less concealment of homosexuality.
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Keywords: CD4; Concealment of homosexuality; HIV; Identity; Self regard

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Psychology University of Iowa E-11 Seashore Hall Iowa City IA, 52242 USA 2: Department of Internal Medicine University of Iowa 3: Department of Psychiatry University of California San Francisco

Publication date: April 1, 2004

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