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The purpose of the present study was to examine the relationship between social contact frequency and pain, and the role of negative and positive affect in this relationship, among older adults with HIV in real-time, real world settings using ecological momentary assessment (EMA). A total of 66 (Mage=59.3, SD=6.3) older adults with HIV completed EMA surveys that included social contact frequency, pain level, and negative and positive affect four times per day for two weeks. Mixed-effects regression models were used to examine concurrent and lagged associations between social contact frequency, pain, and negative and positive affect. Greater recent social contract frequency was associated with less severe current pain (B=-0.04, SE=0.02, p<0.05), while greater current pain was associated with lower subsequent social contact frequency. (B=-0.07, SE=0.02, p<0.001). Further, higher current negative affect was related to greater current pain, and this relationship was dampened by increased recent social contact frequency (B=-0.17, SE=0.05, p<0.001). Neither negative or positive affect was significantly associated with the relationship between current pain and subsequent social contact frequency. Social contact frequency and pain are bidirectionally and inversely associated among older adults with HIV. Further, recent social contact influences current pain by attenuating negative affect. Together, these results highlight the need to address social engagement in interventions for pain among older adults with HIV. National Institute of Mental Health K23 MH107260 and P30MH062512.
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