Sexual Risk Among Injection Drug Users Recruited from Syringe Exchange Programs in California

Published In: Sexually transmitted Diseases, v. 32, no. 1, Jan. 2005, p. 27-34

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 2005

by Laura M. Bogart, Alex H. Kral, Andrea Scott, Rachel Anderson, Neil M. Flynn, Marylou Gilbert, Ricky N. Bluthenthal

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OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to examine correlates of sexual risk among injection drug users (IDUs). STUDY: A total of 1445 IDUs were recruited from California syringe exchange programs. RESULTS: Consistent condom use was independently related to being HIV-positive, having multiple sex partners, not having a steady partner, not sharing syringes, and not injecting amphetamines for men; and engaging in sex work, not sharing syringes, and not having a steady partner for women. Having multiple recent sexual partnerships that included a steady partner was related to engaging in sex work, speedball injection, and amphetamine use among men; and younger age, having had a sexually transmitted disease (STD), engaging in sex work, and using alcohol among women. Having heterosexual anal sex was related to having had an STD, having multiple sexual partners, using amphetamines, and syringe-sharing for men; and younger age and amphetamine use for women. CONCLUSIONS: Comprehensive prevention interventions addressing multiple sexual and injection risk behaviors are needed for IDUs.

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