Body image and anthropometric indicators in adolescents living with HIV

Luiz Rodrigo Augustemak de Lima, Davi Monteiro Teixeira, Priscila Custódio Martins, Cilene Rebolho Martins, Andreia Pelegrini, Edio Luiz Petroski


The aim of this study was to compare body image and anthropometric indicators among adolescents living with HIV and healthy adolescents (control group). In addition, we verified the associations of anthropometric indicators, infection/treatment, sexual maturity, and sociodemographic characteristics with body image in adolescents living with HIV. One hundred and eleven adolescents aged 10 to 15 years were divided into those living with HIV (n = 57) and a control group (n = 54). Body image was investigated using an eight-point body silhouette scale. Body weight, height, circumferences, and skinfolds were measured. Body image dissatisfaction was found in 54.4% of the adolescents living with HIV, with 38.6% of them wishing to increase their body size. Conversely, body image dissatisfaction was due to the desire to reduce body size in the control group (40.7%). No difference between the HIV and control groups was found for the anthropometric indicators analyzed. Gender (β = -0.52), age (β = 0.18), body weight (β = 0.07), body mass index (β = -0.19), and upper arm muscle area (β = -0.08) explained 42% of the variation in the body image score of adolescents living with HIV. Thinness is the main reason for body image dissatisfaction in adolescents living with HIV. Almost half the body dissatisfaction of adolescents living with HIV was explained by demographic and anthropometric variables. 


Adolescent; Anthropometry; Body fat distribution; HIV; Body image

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The abbreviated title of the journal is Rev. Bras. Cineantropom. Desempenho Hum, which should be used in bibliographies, footnotes and bibliographical references. E-ISSN 1980-0037, impressa ISSN 1415-8426, Florianópolis, Santa Catarina, Brazil. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.