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Sex Transm Dis. 2003 May;30(5):399-404.

HIV transmission risk behavior and its relation to antiretroviral treatment adherence.

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1
Department of Public Health, Denver Health and Hospital Authority, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver, Colorado, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Rising rates of antiretroviral drug resistance among recently infected persons are evidence of high-risk behavior among persons in HIV care.

GOAL:

The goal was to determine HIV transmission risk behavior among persons in HIV care and evaluate its association with treatment adherence.

STUDY DESIGN:

The study involved a structured interview of a random sample of patients in HIV care in an urban public clinic. Participants were categorized by transmission risk: high risk = unprotected anal/vaginal sex and/or needle sharing; low risk = protected anal/vaginal sex, unprotected and/or protected oral sex, no needle sharing; no risk = no sex or needle sharing.

RESULTS:

Of the 95 participants, 21 (22%) reported high-risk behavior, 36 (38%) reported low-risk behavior, and 38 (40%) reported no transmission risk in the past 3 months. Younger, more educated persons and those with an active substance abuse diagnosis were more likely to have high transmission risk (P < or = 0.05). Patients who engaged in high-risk behavior had equivalent use of antiretroviral therapy (P = 0.80) but lower adherence (P < or = 0.01) and higher median plasma viral loads (P = 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS:

There was a wide spectrum of transmission risk behavior among persons in HIV care. Persons reporting high-risk behavior were less adherent to antiretroviral therapy, providing a behavioral basis for transmission of drug-resistant HIV.

PMID:
12916130
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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