AIDS-related knowledge and high-risk behaviors of pregnant, substance-dependent women

Ronith Elk, Robert Andres, Andrew Helfgott, Howard Rhoades, Lorna Mangus, Iman Mirza, Ramona Burroughs, John Grabowski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The authors investigated AIDS-related knowledge, high-risk behaviors, and relationships between AIDS-related knowledge, high-risk behaviors, and sociodemographic characteristics of 41 pregnant women entering treatment who were dependent on cocaine or opiates. At entry, patients completed self-report questionnaires on AIDS-related knowledge and sexual and drug use practices. There was a high rate of understanding of risk associated with drug use and perinatal transmission of HIV. Knowledge of high-risk sexual behavior varied, and knowledge of the medical consequences of HIV was modest. Engagement in several high-risk behaviors was identified: lack of condom use, intravenous drug use, sharing of needles, sex with an injecting drug user, and exchanging sex for money or drugs. AIDS-related knowledge and engagement in high-risk behaviors were not significantly correlated. Authors discussed implications of these findings for developing effective HIV prevention strategies in this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)292-300
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal on Addictions
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1996

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