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At-Risk Alcohol Use is Associated with Antiretroviral Treatment Nonadherence Among Adults Living with HIV/AIDS.

  • Author(s): Paolillo, Emily W
  • Gongvatana, Assawin
  • Umlauf, Anya
  • Letendre, Scott L
  • Moore, David J
  • et al.


Alcohol use is a risk factor for nonadherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) among people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA); however, differences in ART adherence across levels of alcohol use are unclear. This study examined whether "at-risk" alcohol use, defined by National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism guidelines, was associated with ART nonadherence among PLWHA.


Participants were 535 HIV-infected adults enrolled in studies at the HIV Neurobehavioral Research Program. ART nonadherence was identified by either self-reported missed dose or plasma viral load detectability (≥50 copies/ml). Potential covariates for multivariable logistic regression included demographics, depression, and substance use disorders.


Using a stepwise model selection procedure, we found that at-risk alcohol use (OR = 0.64; p = 0.032) and low education (OR = 1.09 per 1 year increase in education; p = 0.009) significantly predict lower ART adherence.


A greater focus on the treatment of at-risk alcohol use may improve ART adherence among HIV-infected persons.

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