alexa Risk behaviors and perceptions of AIDS among street injection drug users.
Infectious Diseases

Infectious Diseases

Journal of AIDS & Clinical Research

Author(s): Rhodes F, Corby NH, Wolitski RJ, Tashima N, Crain C, , Rhodes F, Corby NH, Wolitski RJ, Tashima N, Crain C,

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Abstract Standardized survey interviews (n = 325) and guided in-depth interviews (n = 22) were conducted with injection drug users (IDUs) in Long Beach, California, to document drug usage and injection patterns, sexual practices, perceived risk of HIV infection, sources of health information, and knowledge and attitudes about AIDS. Most IDUs reported sharing needles (87.9\%), and a large minority reported regular sterilization of needles/syringes (40.3\%). Lower rates of needle sharing were reported among cocaine users than among heroin and speedball users. HIV seroprevalence was 5.7 percent (11/194). Sexually active female (60.7\%) and male (20.5\%) IDUs reported exchanging sex for money or drugs. Overall, 48.3 percent of IDUs reported having made changes in their injection practices and one-third reported modifying their sexual behavior in order to avoid HIV infection. Differences in drug use, sexual practices, and drug treatment history were found with regard to gender, ethnicity, age, and type of drug injected. Implications of findings for the development of AIDS risk-reduction programs are presented.
This article was published in J Drug Educ and referenced in Journal of AIDS & Clinical Research

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