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Adolescent Substance Use and HIV Risk: Event Analysis

Principal Investigator:
Barbara C. Leigh, PhD, MPH
Senior Research Scientist
Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute

Date: September 1, 2004 to August 30, 2006
Sponsor: National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (R21AA015040)
Categories: Sexual Behavior and HIV Risk

Description: The purpose of this project is to examine the relationship of substance use to HIV risk behavior among adolescents in their first sexual encounters compared to more recent encounters. Reviews of studies of substance use and condom use in specific sexual encounters suggest that drinking is associated with nonuse of condoms or other contraception at first intercourse, but not in other kinds of sexual encounters. However, this proposition has not been explicitly tested. Using other drugs, either alone or with alcohol, might be associated with nonuse of condoms, but many existing studies do not separate the effects of alcohol and different types of drugs. In this project, we will use the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health), a large, nationally representative study of adolescents in grades 7 to 12, to investigate the role of drinking and other drug use in the use of condoms and other contraceptives in first and recent sexual encounters. We will: 1. Describe patterns of drinking, other drug use, and contraceptive use in the first sexual experience and the most recent sexual experience; 2. Use appropriate multilevel statistical techniques to assess the association of substance use and contraceptive use in these events; and 3. Investigate potential reasons for differences in the role of substance use and risk behavior in the two events, including the age of the respondent, the characteristics of the sexual partner, and the sexual experience of the partners.

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