Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


HIV-positive persons-Psychology, AIDS disease-Patients-Psychology, Nightmares-Psychological aspects, Dreams-Psychological aspects, Antiretroviral agents-Side effects, Subjectivity, AIDS disease-Electronic discussion groups, HIV infections-Electronic discussion groups, HIV, AIDS, Dreams, Nightmares, Qualitative, Content analysis, Medication side effects, Efavirenz, ARVs, Chronic illness, Internet forums, HAART


This is an exploratory, qualitative content analysis of 50 vivid dream and nightmare narratives posted to an online forum by people living with HIV/AIDS and taking the anti-HIV drug Efavirenz. It examines thematic connections among the dreams with consideration of how these themes might be linked to and reflective of complex subjective experiences of living with HIV/AIDS. This thesis demonstrates that the phenomenon of vivid dreams and nightmares as purported side effects of Efavirenz is of substantial interest to people living with HIV/AIDS. Furthermore, it argues that vivid dreams and nightmares experienced by people living with HIV/AIDS and taking Efavirenz are not simply medication side effects, but are meaningful experiences that are potentially useful in clinical social work with this population.




iii, 64 pages. Thesis (M.S.W.)-Smith College School for Social Work, 2014. Includes bibliographical references (pages 50-55)