Adolescent girls and young women’s experiences of living with HIV in the context of patriarchal culture in sub-Saharan Africa: A scoping review


Adolescent girls and young women (AGYW) in sub-Saharan Africa are disproportionately affected by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) due to socio-cultural gender, power, and economic disparities. This scoping review examined the literature to explore what is known about AGYW’s everyday personal, relational, and social experiences of HIV to help shape future protective HIV policy and practice. Six databases were searched: Medline, CINAHL, Scopus, ASSIA, Google Scholar, and ProQuest, resulting in a total of 12,581 articles. Of these, 40 articles were included in the review. Key themes generated from the thematic analysis were relational and psychosocial challenges, inhibiting sexual expression, poverty, stigma, and discrimination; managing health in everyday life; agency and resilience; and personal space and social support. In conclusion, the review found a lack of understanding of AGYW’s everyday experiences of living with HIV from their own perspectives. There was also little consideration of the role of patriarchal culture and how this constrains AGYW’s ability to negotiate their relationships. Further research is needed to reveal AGYW’s perspectives on living with HIV in sub-Saharan Africa.


Mhungu A, Sixsmith J, Burnett E




  • Epidemiology and Determinants of Health
    • Determinants of Health
  • Determinants of Health
    • Other
  • Population(s)
    • Women
    • Children or Youth (less than 18 years old)
    • General HIV+ population


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