Background and Objectives: Studies on the relationship between alcohol consumption and HIV-related risk behaviors report inconclusive and contradictory results. Goal of this Study: This study sought to examine the relationship between drug and alcohol use, personal network characteristics, and sexual risk behaviors. Study Design: A sample of 290 injecting drug users in Baltimore, Maryland, were interviewed. Results: More than half the males and 28% of the females reported multiple partners within the prior 6 months, and 33% of the males reported exchanging money or drugs for sex. For males, heavy drinking was significantly associated with multiple partners, exchanging money or drugs for sex, and casual sex. The personal network characteristics of size and density, as measured by the percentage of network members who knew each other, were associated with sexual risk behaviors. Conclusion: These results indicate that among injecting drug users in Baltimore, heavy drinkers, and those with larger, lower density personal networks have increased levels of sexual risk behaviors.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Microbiology (medical)
- Infectious Diseases