Psychological and Physical Health Correlates of Body Cell Mass Depletion Among HIV+ Men

Published in: Journal of Psychosomatic Research, v. 49, No. 1, 2000, p. 55-57

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 2000

by Glenn Wagner, Steve J. Ferrando, Judith Godwin Rabkin

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OBJECTIVE: To assess whether significant body cell mass depletion related to HIV is associated with declines in physical health and psychological well-being. METHODS: As part of a 2-year prospective HIV study, semiannual assessments included measures of body composition, psychological status, and physical health. RESULTS: As measured by bioelectric impedance analysis, 58 (31%) of 187 enrolled HIV men had significant body cell mass depletion at some point during the study, of who 23 subsequently lost at least an additional 5% of body cell mass in the 6 months between any two consecutive study visits. This additional body cell mass depletion was associated with significant increase in fatigue, global distress and depressive symptomatology, and reduced life satisfaction. CONCLUSION: These data illuminate the importance of monitoring body weight and body cell mass, and the need for awareness of the association between malnutrition, mental health, and quality of life.

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