Posttraumatic growth and well-being among people living with HIV: A systematic review and meta-analysis in recognition of 40 years of HIV/AIDS


Objectives: This systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to synthesize, analyze, and critically review existing studies on the relationship between posttraumatic growth (PTG) and psychological well-being (operationalized either via positive or negative well-being indicators) among people living with HIV (PLWH). We also investigated whether this association varies as a function of socio-demographic, clinical characteristics, and study publication year.

Method: We conducted a structured literature search on Web of Science, Scopus, MedLine, PsyARTICLES, ProQuest, and Google Scholar. The most important inclusion criteria encompassed quantitative and peer-reviewed articles published in English.

Results: After selection, we accepted 27 articles for further analysis (N = 6333 participants). Eight studies used positive indicators of well-being. The other 19 studies focused on negative indicators of well-being. Meta-analysis revealed that there was a negative weak-size association between PTG and negative well-being indicators (r = -0.18, 95% CI [-0.23; -0.11]) and a positive medium-size association between PTG and positive well-being measures (r = 0.35, 95% CI [0.21; 0.47]). We detected no moderators.

Conclusions: The present meta-analysis and systematic review revealed expected negative and positive associations between PTG and negative versus positive well-being indicators among PLWH. Specifically, the relationship between PTG and positive well-being indicators was more substantial than the link between PTG and negative well-being measures in these patients. Finally, observed high heterogeneity between studies and several measurement problems call for significant modification and improvement of PTG research among PLWH.


Pięta M, Rzeszutek M




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


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