Psychological wellbeing emerged as the only factor that predicted good adherence to HIV antiretrovirals (ARVs) in a recent study, aidsmap reports. Publishing their findings in the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes, researchers from the HPTN 052 study (which famously demonstrated that taking ARVs was linked to a 96 percent reduction in risk of transmitting the virus) recruited 1,763 mixed-HIV-status heterosexual couples in nine countries and randomized the HIV-positive partners to begin treatment early (when their CD4 levels were between 350 and 550), or on a delay.

After controlling for various factors, the researchers found that the only variable linked with optimum adherence, defined as taking 95 percent of ARV doses according to counts of remaining pills at clinic visits as well as self report, was good mental health.

The only element that predicted whether someone had a fully suppressed viral load was optimum adherence.

To read the aidsmap story, click here.

To read the journal abstract, click here.