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AIDS Behav. 2008 Jul;12(4):570-7. Epub 2007 Jul 17.

High levels of risk behavior among people living with HIV Initiating and waiting to start antiretroviral therapy in Cape Town South Africa.

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Department of International Health and Development, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, 1440 Canal Street, Suite 2200, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA.


Baseline data were collected in Cape Town during 2006 to study if patients on combination antiretroviral therapy (ART) experience decreased inhibition to avoid risky sexual behavior. A total of 924 HIV-positive individuals were recruited; 520 who initiated ART within 3 months and 404 waiting for ART. Nearly half of men (40.1%) and women (46.3%) reported having unprotected sex their last time. Men and women who did not disclose their HIV status to their partner [Odds ration (OR)=2.57 (95% CI: 1.22-5.50) and 2.84 (95% CI: 1.84-4.39), respectively], and those with ambivalent perception about the relationship between ART and HIV transmission [OR=2.08 (95% CI: 1.00-4.30) and 2.39 (95% CI: 1.50-3.84), respectively], were twice as likely to have had unprotected sex their last time. Results suggest an urgent need to strengthen prevention interventions among HIV-positive individuals on and about to start ART in this setting.

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