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ERIC Number: ED310334
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Aug-11
Pages: 27
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Health Care and the Social Construction of AIDS: Impact of Disease Definitions on Psychosocial Adaptation and Economic Circumstances.
Crystal, Stephen; Jackson, Marguerite
As with other illnesses, Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a socially constructed phenomenon, not simply a biological entity. Biologically, Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection causes immunosuppression, which in turn causes a spectrum of disease states. The official definition of AIDS by the Centers for Disease Control requires the presence of certain marker conditions. Those whose illnesses do not have these markers, but may have equal or greater impairment, are categorized as "pre-AIDS" or "AIDS-related complex" (ARC). This study compared the experiences of both patients with AIDS and patients with non-AIDS symptomatic HIV illnesses. Subjects (N=104) responded to a survey instrument encompassing demographic characteristics, social supports, economic situations, and health services utilization. The extent to which the medical and socioeconomic needs of patients were being met was also assessed. Patients with ARC reported more unmet needs in most areas, often experiencing their situations as being in "limbo" or "the gray zone," and in many respects seemed to perceive their life situation more negatively than did those with AIDS. A reorientation is needed away from thinking about persons dying with AIDS towards persons living with HIV infection. (Author/ABL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A