Predictors of Sexually Transmitted Infection Positivity among Substance-Using Native American Adults

Rachel Strom Chambers, Shea Littlepage, Anne Rompalo, Angelita Lee, Anna Slimp, Laura Melgar, Mariddie Craig, Charlotte Gaydos, Lauren Tingey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are a public health crisis with Native Americans suffering a high burden of disease. Studies across gender and racial/ethnic groups have found varying risk factors associated with STI positivity. Understanding how risk factors are associated with STI positivity can help design interventions for those most at risk. Methods Participants were Native American binge substance using adults enrolled in a randomized controlled trial evaluating a brief intervention to increase STI screening and reduce sexual risk-taking behaviors. Participants completed a self-report assessment at baseline that included questions about sexual risk factors and STI testing behaviors and diagnosis. This analysis includes those who had ever completed an STI test at baseline. Bivariate and multivariate analyses using logistical regression were utilized to identify associations between risk factors and past STI diagnosis. Results A total of 193 people were included in the analysis. Over half (50.6%) of the participants had ever been diagnosed with an STI. Risk behaviors varied by gender. More women with a self-reported history of STI reported having sex with someone they thought had an STI, past experience of physical/sexual violence, and having passed out from drinking. Men with a self-reported history of STI were more likely to report past marijuana and other drug use. Among women with a self-reported history of STI, having sex with someone they thought had an STI was associated with STI positivity, whereas other drug use was associated with STI positivity among men with a self-reported history of STI. Conclusions Findings provide information for those working to reduce STIs in Native Communities to better identify and design programs for those at highest risk for STIs. Additional studies examining gender dynamics and sexual risk taking among native adults are warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-216
Number of pages6
JournalSexually transmitted diseases
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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