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Drug Alcohol Depend. 2007 Nov;91 Suppl 1:S4-17. Epub 2007 Jun 19.

Methods to recruit and retain a cohort of young-adult injection drug users for the Third Collaborative Injection Drug Users Study/Drug Users Intervention Trial (CIDUS III/DUIT).

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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, 1600 Clifton Road, MS E-45, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.



New injection drug users (IDUs) are at high risk for blood-borne viral infections. Given U.S. policy to only fund proven-effective HIV prevention interventions, insights into conducting intervention trials among young IDUs are provided here by describing methods and participants' characteristics in the CIDUS III/DUIT study.


In 2002-2004, 15-30-year-old IDUs in Baltimore, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, and Seattle were recruited through community outreach, advertising and coupon-based participant referrals. Baseline interviews assessed sociodemographics, injection, and sexual behaviors. Antibody tests for HIV and hepatitis A, B, and C viruses (HAV, HBV, and HCV) were conducted. IDUs who were HIV and HCV antibody negative at baseline were eligible to participate in a randomized controlled HIV/HCV prevention trial. Follow-up assessments were conducted 3 and 6 months post-intervention. Data were analyzed to identify participant differences at baseline by city, trial enrollment, and trial retention.


Baseline assessments were completed by 3285 IDUs. Participants were mean age 23.8 years, 69% male, 64% White, 17% Hispanic, and 8% Black. Seroprevalence of HIV, HCV, HBV, and HAV antibodies were 2.9, 34.4, 22.4, and 19.3%, respectively. Of the 2062 (62.7%) baseline participants who were HIV and HCV antibody negative, 859 (41.7%) were randomized. At least one follow-up assessment was completed by 712 (83%) randomized participants. Contextual factors, primarily homelessness, were associated with lower enrollment and retention.


Recruitment and retention of young-adult IDUs for complex intervention trials is complicated, yet feasible. Risk behaviors among participants enrolling in and completing the trial reflected those eligible to enroll.


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