SciELO - Scientific Electronic Library Online

 
vol.38 issue2Could health care workers determine the occupational performance priorities of people with disability living in a developing community?South African Occupational Therapy Values: 1997 submission to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission author indexsubject indexarticles search
Home Pagealphabetic serial listing  

South African Journal of Occupational Therapy

On-line version ISSN 2310-3833
Print version ISSN 0038-2337

S. Afr. j. occup. ther. vol.38 n.2 Pretoria  2008

 

 

 

Occupational Therapy and its potentially positive influence upon the CD4 count of individuals with HIV: A single case study

 

 

Robin JoubertI; Nasreen MotalaII; Nicole MottaIII; Chantal ChristopherIV

INat Dip OT (PTA), BA (UNISA), MOT (UDW), D.ED (UKZN); Academic Coordinator, Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Therapeutic and Rehabilitative Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Kwazulu-Natal
IIB.OT (UKZN); Occupational Therapist, King Edward Hospital
IIIThird year Occupational Therapy student (UKZN)
IVB.OT (UDW), NDT (Cert); Part-time Lecturer, Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Therapeutic and Rehabilitative Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal

Correspondence

 

 


ABSTRACT

This article is a case study of a young woman in her early twenties in advanced stages of AIDS, who is on antiretroviral (ARV) medication and has a CD4 count of 51 that has remained static for the past six months. An intensive palliative occupational therapy programme has commenced twice weekly with emphasis on uplifting her mood and giving her a sense of control over and purpose in her life. Secondary aims included improving her endurance and independence.
Using a qualitative approach, her progress was chronologically evaluated from diagnosis, hospitalization to discharge, tracking changes in her mood and state of health. After commencing the mostly palliative OT programme her CD4 count increased significantly and her mood and general health improved such that this was repeatedly noted in her file and she was discharged 6 weeks later i.e. nearly 6 months after admission. Although this single case study cannot be considered conclusive evidence of the positive effects of OT on the CD4 count and health status of individuals in advanced stages of AIDS, it suggests further investigation of this potential.

Key words: CD4 Count, palliative programmes, case study


 

 

“Full text available only in PDF format”

 

 

References:

1. van der Reyden D, Joubert RWE. HIV/AIDS in psychiatry: the moral and ethical dilemmas and issues facing occupational therapists treating persons with HIV/AIDS. In: Crouch R, Alers V (Editors) Occupational Therapy in Psychiatry and Mental Health London and Philadelphia: Whurr Publishers, 2005:95-146.         [ Links ]

2. O'Leary A. Stress, emotion, and human immune function. Psychological Bulletin. 1990; 8(3):363-382.         [ Links ]

3. Lewis S, The link between stress and the immune system and its possible effects upon increasing or decreasing the CD4 count in individuals who are HIV positive. How can occupational therapy programmes help to reduce the stress and thus contribute to the increase in the CD4 count? A physical assignment as part of the level 4 for the B.Occ.Ther degree at the University of KwaZulu Natal, Durban. 2007.         [ Links ]

4. Tigges KN. Occupational Therapy. Oxford textbook on Palliative Medicine 1993:535-543.         [ Links ]

5. Biondi M, Zannino L. Psychological stress, neuroimmunomodulation, and susceptibility to infectious diseases in animals and man: A review, Pyschotherapy and Psychosomatics. 1997; 66:3-26.         [ Links ]

6. "CD4 Cell Count" http://www.aidsmap.com/cmsl03l944.asp accessed 2007/04/11        [ Links ]

7. Antoni MH, Gruess DG, Klimas N, Maher K, Cruess S, Kumar M, Lutgendorf, SIronson G, Schniederman N, Fletcher MA. Stress management and immune system reconstitution in symptomatic HIV-infected gay men over time: Effects on transitional naïve T cells (CD4+CD45RA+CD29+). American Journal of Psychiatry. January 2002; 159(1):143-145.         [ Links ]

8. Kiecolt-Glaser J, Glaser R. Psychoneuroimmunology and Health Consequences: Data and shred mechanisms. Psychosomatic Medicine. 1995; 57:269-274.         [ Links ]

9. Jean-Bapatiste FL. Music as an alliance in reducing the stress level of people with HIV/AIDS. International conference on AIDS. July 7-12 2002; Chicago. Abstract no. WePeF6832. http://gateqay.nlm.nih.gov/MeetingAbstracts/102254312.html accessed 2007/04/12        [ Links ]

10. Gengiah T. (CAPRISA) email correspondence 2008/05/12.         [ Links ]

11. Ramugondo E. Unlocking spirituality-play as a health promoting occupation in the context of HIV/AIDS. In: Kronenberg F Algado S, Pollard N. Occupational therapy without boarders - Learning from the spirit of survivors. Edinburgh:Elsevier, 2005.         [ Links ]

12. Ndlovu N, Daswa R. Monitoring AIDS treatment rollout in South'Africa: Lessons from the joint Civil Society Monitoring Forum(JCSMF). Budget Brief 2006.No. 161, 13th April.AIDS Budget Unit (ABU) -IDASA.         [ Links ]

13. Department of Health, Republic of South Africa, Progress report on declaration of commitment on HIV and AIDS Prepared for the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on HIV and AIDS., February 2006.         [ Links ]

 

 

Correspondence:
Robin Joubert
Joubertr@ukzn.ac.za