Two strategies to increase adherence to HIV antiretroviral medication: life-steps and medication monitoring

Behav Res Ther. 2001 Oct;39(10):1151-62. doi: 10.1016/s0005-7967(00)00091-7.


Advances in the medical treatment of HIV have made it clear that adherence to highly active antiretroviral treatment is a crucial feature for treatment success. The present paper had two goals: (1) to examine psychosocial predictors of adherence in persons receiving HIV antiretroviral therapy; (2) to compared two minimal-treatment interventions to increase HIV medication adherence in a subset of persons who self-reported less than perfect adherence. One of the interventions, Life-Steps, is a single-session intervention utilizing cognitive-behavioral, motivational interviewing, and problem-solving techniques. The other intervention, self-monitoring, utilizes a pill-diary and an adherence questionnaire alone. Significant correlates of adherence included depression, social support, adherence self-efficacy, and punishment beliefs about HIV. Depression was a significant unique predictor of adherence over and above the other variables. Both interventions yielded improvement in adherence from baseline, and the Life-Steps intervention showed faster improvements in adherence for persons with extant adherence problems.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anti-HIV Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Anti-HIV Agents / adverse effects
  • Behavior Therapy / methods*
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy / methods
  • Drug Monitoring*
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy*
  • HIV Infections / psychology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Compliance / psychology*
  • Pilot Projects
  • Risk Factors
  • Self Care / psychology
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Anti-HIV Agents