Mental health issues and HIV/AIDS: HIV-specific screening and treatment tools for mood disorders


Key take-home messages
  • HIV-specific screening and treatment tools for substance abuse and mood disorders have not been developed. The following are primarily recommendations from experts in the HIV field.
  • Physical symptoms of depression are difficult to distinguish from the physical manifestations of HIV, except perhaps to physicians with a particular expertise in serving people with HIV. Following an initial screen, using the PHQ-9 noted above, physicians and professionals without an expertise in HIV infection should consider seeking consultation or referring to a specialist.
  • With the exception of depression, mood disorders and substance abuse disorders among people with HIV are poorly addressed in the literature.
  • Significant additional research is necessary to investigate the interactions of psychopharmacology and HAART.


The Ontario HIV Treatment Network: Rapid Response Service




  • Population(s)
    • General HIV+ population
  • Mental Health
    • Depression
    • Psychiatric disorders


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