Background and Objective: Risk behaviors are more common in the HIV-positive patients than that in the general population. These behaviors are affected by various factors, such as biological, familial, and social determinants, peer group, media, and lifestyle. Low family functioning is one of the important factors predicting risk behaviors. Regarding this, the present study aimed to investigate the role of family functioning in predicting risk behaviors in the HIV-infected patients based on the mediating roles of risky decision making and lifestyle.
Materials and Methods: This descriptive correlational study was conducted on 147 HIV-positive patients selected through convenience sampling technique. The data were collected using the health promoting lifestyle profile-2 (HPLP-2), family adaptability and cohesion scale IV (FACES-IV), balloon analogue risk task (BART), and risk behavior assessment in social situation. The data were analyzed using structural equation modeling method in LISREL 8.8 software.
Results: According to the results, there was an indirect relationship between family functioning and risk behaviors. Furthermore, family functioning both directly and indirectly affected the risk behaviors through two mediators of lifestyle and risky decision making.
Conclusion: As the findings indicated, family functioning directly contributed to risk behaviors. Moreover, this variable indirectly affected risk behaviors through the mediating roles of risky decision making and lifestyle. Consequently, the future studies should focus more deeply on family functioning role in the risk behaviors of the HIV-infected patients.