$603,412 NIH-Funded Study Examines Patterns of Healthy Aging Among Gay Men

By Melanie Arter | October 8, 2015 | 1:48 PM EDT

(AP Photo)

(CNSNews.com) – The National Institutes of Health has awarded $603,412 to the University of Pittsburgh for a five-year study of patterns of healthy aging among gay men.

“Although many older men who have sex with men (MSM) exhibit significant strengths that have helped them remain healthy well into later life, these strategies have not been well documented,” it stated.  “In particular, the strengths, or resiliencies, of older MSM have not been carefully studied in terms of their ability to support health as men age.”

The study will use a theory-based approach and will consist of “six waves” of an ongoing study to “document how resiliencies moderate the effects of health risks to better explain patterns of health and illness among aging MSM.”

According to the grant, titled, “Understanding Patterns of Healthy Aging Among Men Who Have Sex With Men,” there is a need for the development of “health promotion programs that are more potent” than the “time-limited effects found among HIV prevention interventions.”

“One of the happy consequences of HAART is that HIV-positive (HIV+) individuals now have available to them medications that allow them to reach old age. This means that we have the previously unexpected challenge of finding ways to support healthy aging in communities with high HIV prevalence rates,” the grant stated.

HAART stands for highly active antiretroviral therapy.

“This challenge is likely to be particularly difficult among men who have sex with men (MSM) due to not only their very high background HIV prevalence rates but also the general dearth of proven models to promote healthy aging among older MSM,” the grant added.

CNSNews.com contacted Ronald Stall, project leader for the grant, and the University of Pittsburgh for more details about the grant. However, calls were not returned by press time.

The project started on Sept. 25, 2015 and ends on June 30, 2020. The funding for the project began on Sept. 25, 2015 and ends one year later on June 30, 2016.

 

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