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J Adolesc Health. 2012 Mar;50(3):279-88. doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2011.07.010. Epub 2011 Oct 7.

Sexual risk avoidance and sexual risk reduction interventions for middle school youth: a randomized controlled trial.

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  • 1Center for Health Promotion and Prevention Research, University of Texas Health Science Center, 7000 Fannin Street, Houston, TX 77030, USA. Christine.Markham@uth.tmc.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To evaluate the efficacy of two, theory-based, multimedia, middle school sexual education programs in delaying sexual initiation.

METHODS:

Three-armed, randomized controlled trial comprising 15 urban middle schools; 1,258 predominantly African American and Hispanic seventh grade students followed into ninth grade. Both programs included group and individualized, computer-based activities addressing psychosocial variables. The risk avoidance (RA) program met federal abstinence education guidelines; the risk reduction (RR) program emphasized abstinence and included computer-based condom skills-training. The primary outcome assessed program impact on delayed sexual initiation; secondary outcomes assessed other sexual behaviors and psychosocial outcomes.

RESULTS:

Participants were 59.8% females (mean age: 12.6 years). Relative to controls, the RR program delayed any type of sexual initiation (oral, vaginal, or anal sex) in the overall sample (adjusted odds ratio [AOR]: .65, 95% CI: .54-.77), among females (AOR: .43, 95% CI: .31-.60), and among African Americans (AOR: .38, 95% CI: .18-.79). RR students also reduced unprotected sex at last intercourse (AOR: .67, 95% CI: .47-.96), frequency of anal sex in the past 3 months (AOR: .53, 95% CI: .33-.84), and unprotected vaginal sex (AOR: .59, 95% CI: .36-.95). The RA program delayed any sexual initiation among Hispanics (AOR: .40, 95% CI: .19-.86), reduced unprotected sex at last intercourse (AOR: .70, 95% CI: .52-.93), but increased the number of recent vaginal sex partners (AOR: 1.69, 95% CI: 1.01-2.82). Both programs positively affected psychosocial outcomes.

CONCLUSIONS:

The RR program positively affected sexually inexperienced and experienced youth, whereas the RA program delayed initiation among Hispanics and had mixed effects among sexually experienced youth.

Copyright © 2012 Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine. All rights reserved.

PMID:
22325134
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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