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Am J Public Health. 2007 Jun;97(6):1084-9. Epub 2007 Apr 26.

REAL men: a group-randomized trial of an HIV prevention intervention for adolescent boys.

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  • 1Department of Behavioral Sciences and Health Education, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, Atlanta, Ga 30322, USA.

Erratum in

  • Am J Public Health. 2007 Aug;97(8):1350.



We tested the efficacy of an intervention among 11- to 14-year-old adolescent boys to promote delay of sexual intercourse, condom use among those who were sexually active, and communication on sexuality between fathers (or father figures) and sons.


Sites were randomly assigned to the intervention and control groups. Assessments were conducted prior to the intervention and at 3-, 6-, and 12-month follow-up interviews.


A total of 277 fathers and their sons completed baseline assessments. Most participants were African American, and most fathers lived with their sons. Significantly higher rates of sexual abstinence and condom use and of intent to delay initiation of sexual intercourse were observed among adolescent boys whose fathers participated in the intervention. Fathers in the intervention group reported significantly more discussions about sexuality and greater intentions to discuss sexuality than did control-group fathers.


The study demonstrates that fathers can serve as an important educator on HIV prevention and sexuality for their sons.

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