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HIV, Trauma, and Support

Caregiving in the Age of #MeToo

Pullen, Sara D., DPT, MPH, CHES

doi: 10.1097/01.REO.0000000000000138

There is a growing body of research about the intersection of trauma and HIV/AIDS; as many as 95% of people living with HIV report severe traumatic stressors in their histories, and up to 54% meet clinical criteria for posttraumatic stress disorder. The actual event of receiving an HIV/AIDS diagnosis can be considered a traumatic stressor, which is often accompanied by an increase in chronic pain, coronary artery disease, and psychiatric comorbidities. As physical therapists, we hold in our hands not only the tools for healing bodies but also the potential to unlock stored trauma, and for bearing witness to our patients' brave moments of #MeToo. As physical therapists, how we provide support? How do we combine our tools for healing the body into those of healing the mind and heart?

Associate Professor, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA

Correspondence: Sara D. Pullen, DPT, MPH, CHES, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, 1462 Clifton Rd, Ste 312, Atlanta, GA 30322 (

The author declares no conflicts of interest.

©2018 (C) Academy of Oncologic Physical Therapy, APTA
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