A comparison of drug use and HIV infection risk behavior between injecting drug users currently in treatment, previously in treatment, and never in treatment

Michael W. Ross, Aaron Stowe, Alex Wodak, M. E. Miller, Julian Gold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

We compared three groups of injecting drug users in a large cross–sectional study on HIV/AIDS and risk behaviors in Sydney, Australia, to determine what differences existed between those who had never been in treatment (n = 458), had previously been in treatment (n = 387), and were currently in treatment (n = 367). Drug use for those currently in treatment was assessed during the last typical using month before treatment. Those previously and currently in treatment were similar in terms of drug use patterns and HIV risk–related injecting behaviors. Those never in treatment were younger, had a lower level of HIV risk–related injecting behaviors, and reported lower drug use and less involvement in the drug subculture. There was little difference between the three groups on HIV risk–related sexual behaviors. These data suggest that those never in treatment are less dysfunctional and possibly less involved in drug–using careers, whereas there appears to be a close relationship between being previously and currently in treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)518-528
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes
Volume6
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1993

Keywords

  • HIV
  • Injecting drug use
  • Risk behavior
  • Treatment status

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