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Substance-Related and Addictive Disorder? The Special Role in HIV Transmission 

Substance-Related and Addictive Disorder? The Special Role in HIV Transmission
Substance-Related and Addictive Disorder? The Special Role in HIV Transmission

Philip Bialer

, Kenneth Ashley

, and John Grimaldi

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date: 05 August 2020

Substance use disorders have been linked to HIV/AIDS since the beginning of the epidemic. Injecting drug use can serve as a mode of viral transmission and in some parts of the world and among certain populations is the primary vector of transmission. Substances of misuse implicated in HIV transmission include alcohol, cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and Ecstasy. Use of both non-injecting drugs and alcohol is also associated with increased sexual and other risk-taking behaviors and seroconversion. In addition, substance use disorders and other psychiatric disorders often coexist and can have profound effects on the medical management of HIV/AIDS as well as on a person’s social interaction and quality of life. Many people with HIV/AIDS therefore suffer from triple diagnoses necessitating comprehensive evaluation and treatment and a team approach involving medical, mental health, and substance use caregjvers. Treatment can include detoxification, harm reduction, individual, group, and family therapy, medication, and awareness of potential drug interactions.

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