Gender, aids, and bereavement: A comparison of women and men living with HIV

Jacquelyn Summers, Sidney Zisook, Andres F Sciolla, Thomas Patterson, J. Hampton Atkinson, Igor Grant, Thomas Marcotte, Mark R. Wallace, James L. Chandler, J. Allen McCutchan, Robert K. Heaton, John Hesselink, Terry Jernigan, Ronald J. Ellis, Daniel R. Masys, Ian Abramson, Michele Frybarger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to examine the bereavement experience, psychiatric morbidity, and suicidality in bereaved men and women living with HIV. HIV+ women (n = 31) who reported a loss in the recent 12 months were case matched to bereaved HIV+ men (n = 62) on the basis of lifetime histories of major depression. Study participants were examined for grief reactions, psychiatric morbidity, mood symptomatology, and suicidality using the Texas Revised Inventory of Grief Revised, Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-III-R, the Hamilton Depression and Anxiety Rating, and the Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Suicide. Bereaved HIV+ women presented with intensified bereavement responses, a higher prevalence of current generalized anxiety disorder, and elevated thoughts and gestures of suicide and when compared to HIV+ men. In conclusion, bereaved women living with HIV may be at increased risk for bereavement complicated with psychiatric morbidity and thoughts of suicide. It is critical that adequate mental health support services be available to this growing risk group of bereaved individuals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)225-241
Number of pages17
JournalDeath Studies
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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