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REPRODUCTIVE CONCERNS OF WOMEN AT RISK FOR HIV INFECTION

Authors

  • Ann B. Williams RN-C, EdD

    Corresponding author
      Clinical Nurse Scholars Program, University of California, San Francisco, N611Y, Box 0610, San Francisco, CA 94143.
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    • Ann Williams, RN-C, EdD, is a family nurse practitioner and assistant professor of community health nursing at Yale School of Nursing, where her clinical practice has focused on substance abuse and AIDS. She earned her M.S.N. degree in community health nursing in 1981 and on EdD. in adult education from Teachers College, Columbia University in 1989. She is currently a Robert Wood Jhonson Clinical Nurse Scholar at the University of California, San Francisco, where she is continuing her clinical practice and research in HIV disease and substance abuse.


Clinical Nurse Scholars Program, University of California, San Francisco, N611Y, Box 0610, San Francisco, CA 94143.

ABSTRACT

This qualitative, exploratory study investigated knowledge about perinatal transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and perceptions of the childbearing role among women at risk for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) through injection drug use. Content analysis was used to analyze the results of 21 face-to-face, semistructured interviews with women who had a personal history of injection drug use or who were the sexual partners of men who injected drugs. Contextual variables influencing women at risk for HIV infection that were identified included fear of HIV antibody testing, a belief that perinatal HIV transmission is inevitable, support for pregnancy termination in the event of HIV-associated pregnancy, a strong desire for children, pride in mothering behavior and guilt about the possibility of transmitting HIV to unborn children. AIDS education and counseling for these women will be most effective if these variables are considered.

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