A randomized controlled clinical trial of a bereavement support group intervention in human immunodeficiency virus type 1-seropositive and - seronegative homosexual men

Karl Goodkin, Nancy T. Blaney, Daniel J Feaster, Teri Baldewicz, Jack E. Burkhalter, Barbara Leeds

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

64 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Bereavement is a severe and frequent stressor among those infected with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) and those affected by the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome epidemic. This study examined the impact of a research-derived, semistructured, bereavement support group among HIV-1 seropositive and HIV-1-seronegative homosexual men having lost a close friend or intimate partner to the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome within the prior 6 months. Methods: A total of 166 subjects (97 HIV-1 seropositive; 69 HIV-1 seronegative) were randomly assigned to groups of homogeneous HIV-1 serostatus or to their respective control group. Subjects were assessed at entry and at 10 weeks with psychosocial questionnaires, a semistructured interview for psychopathology, a medical history and physical examination, urine collection, and phlebotomy. Results: For a composite score of psychological distress and grief as well as the distress component, scores were significantly lower after the intervention by analyses against baseline scores, with and without control variables for other factors affecting distress level. A significant reduction in grief level was found only in the analysis that included control variables. Control subjects showed no significant decrements in overall distress, although a significant decrement in grief level was observed. Conclusion: A brief group intervention can significantly reduce overall distress and accelerate grief reduction in a sample of bereaved subjects unselected for psychopathology or at high risk for subsequent maladjustment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-59
Number of pages8
JournalArchives of General Psychiatry
Volume56
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1999

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Bereavement
Self-Help Groups
HIV-1
Grief
Randomized Controlled Trials
Psychopathology
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome
Urine Specimen Collection
Phlebotomy
Physical Examination
Sexual Minorities
Interviews
Psychology
Control Groups
Research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

A randomized controlled clinical trial of a bereavement support group intervention in human immunodeficiency virus type 1-seropositive and - seronegative homosexual men. / Goodkin, Karl; Blaney, Nancy T.; Feaster, Daniel J; Baldewicz, Teri; Burkhalter, Jack E.; Leeds, Barbara.

In: Archives of General Psychiatry, Vol. 56, No. 1, 01.01.1999, p. 52-59.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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