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J Med Assoc Thai. 2007 Nov;90(11):2442-8.

Social harms in injecting drug users participating in the first phase III HIV vaccine trial in Thailand.

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Vaccine Trial Centre, Faculty of Tropical Medicine, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand.



To study related social harms due to identification with a group of participants in an HIV-1 vaccine trial who are potentially high risk for HIV/AIDS.


Two thousand five hundred forty six injecting drug users (IDU) were enrolled in a 36-month vaccine trial. Volunteers received education and risk reduction counseling at every six-month study visit. Social harms were not actively solicited, but volunteers were encouraged to report any during the process of counseling at every six-month visit. If a social harm was reported, a questionnaire was administered and the harm was tracked If necessary, clinic staff assisted in resolving the social harm.


Thirty-nine social harms were reported by 37 participants; 33 (84.6%) were disturbances in personal relationships, three (7.7%) in employment, one (2.6%) was medically related, one (2.6%) was related to admission in the military and one (2.6%) was related with misbelieve about the vaccine. The most common reason for disturbances in personal relationships was suspicion of HIV infection (n=20). The impact of these harms on quality of life was characterized as minimal by 31 (79.5%) participants, as moderate by seven (17.9%), and as major by one (2.6%). All social harms were documented to be resolved by the end of the study.


A few participants reported study-related social harms during the course of the trial. Most harm had minimal impact and all could be resolved by the end of the present study.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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