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Sexual risk behaviour among subgroups of heterosexual HIV infected patients in an urban setting.
  1. J A DeHovitz,
  2. J Feldman,
  3. L S Brown,
  4. H Minkoff
  1. SUNY Health Science Center at Brooklyn, Brooklyn 11201, USA.


    OBJECTIVE: To determine the frequency of characteristics associated with unprotected heterosexual intercourse in HIV infected adults in an urban area. DESIGN: Retrospective comparison of sexual risk transmission behaviour between HIV infected men and women from a drug treatment site and between women from the drug site and HIV infected women from an urban medical centre. METHODS: HIV infected women and men were asked questions on sexual behaviour for a 1 year period before enrollment. The outcome variable was heterosexual risk behaviour (HRB) defined as having vaginal sex at least once in the previous year and not always using condoms. RESULTS: 73% of the drug clinic females, 72% of the drug clinic males, and 42% of the medical centre female engaged in HRB. Using logistic regression analysis, women and men in drug treatment engaged in similar rates of HRB; however, women in drug treatment were four times (95% CI = 2.0-8.3) more likely to engage in HRB risk behaviour than women from the medical centre. CONCLUSION: The data suggest that a surprisingly large portion of HIV infected patients under treatment engaged in HRB, especially former drug users. Without specifically targeted interventions, the heterosexual spread of HIV in urban areas will continue to be a serious problem.

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