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Psychiatric disorders, HIV infection and HIV/hepatitis co-infection in the correctional setting.

Baillargeon JG, Paar DP, Wu H, Giordano TP, Murray O, Raimer BG, Avery EN, Diamond PM, Pulvino JS. Psychiatric disorders, HIV infection and HIV/hepatitis co-infection in the correctional setting. AIDS Care. 2008 Jan 1; 20(1):124-9.

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Psychiatric disorders such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and depression have long been associated with risk behaviors for HIV, hepatitis C virus (HCV) and hepatitis B virus (HBV). The US prison population is reported to have elevated rates of HIV, hepatitis and most psychiatric disorders. This study examined the association of six major psychiatric disorders with HIV mono-infection, HIV/HCV co-infection and HIV/HBV co-infection in one of the nation's largest prison populations. The study population consisted of 370,511 Texas Department of Criminal Justice inmates who were incarcerated for any duration between January 1, 2003 and July 1, 2006. Information on medical conditions and sociodemographic factors was obtained from an institution-wide electronic medical information system. Offenders diagnosed with HIV mono-infection, HIV/HCV, HIV/HBV and all HIV combined exhibited elevated rates of major depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, non-schizophrenic psychotic disorder and any psychiatric disorder. In comparison to offenders with HIV mono-infection, those with HIV/HCV co-infection had an elevated prevalence of any psychiatric disorder. This cross-sectional study's finding of positive associations between psychiatric disease and both HIV infection and hepatitis co-infection among Texas prison inmates holds both clinical and public health relevance. It will be important for future investigations to examine the extent to which psychiatric disorders serve as a barrier to medical care, communication with clinicians and adherence to prescribed medical regimens among both HIV-mono-infected and HIV/hepatitis-co-infected inmates.

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