Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine
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Year : 2008  |  Volume : 30  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 105-107

HIV seroprevalence among IV drug abusers and role of risk behaviors

1 Department of Psychiatry, Government Stanley Medical College and Hospital, Chennai-600 001, India
2 Department of Immunology, Government Stanley Medical College and Hospital, Chennai-600 001, India

Correspondence Address:
R Ponnudurai
24/3-B-T. T. K. Road, Chennai-600 018
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0253-7176.48485

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Among the various risk behaviors that are identified to cause HIV infection, intravenous drug abuse is also included. Besides aiming to evaluate the prevalence of HIV infection among the male IV drug abusers, this study was also designed to assess their risk taking behaviors. ELISA test for HIV infection was carried out in all 27 IV drug abusers who consented to participate in the study. Of them, 11 (40.74%) turned out to be HIV seropositive. All participants had history of needle sharing. Three of them indulged in homosexuality and inclusive of them six had contact with commercial sex workers. Additionally, two patients confessed to extramarital contact. Most of the HIV infected individuals were below 25 years of age when they commenced the IV drug abuse. In view of the coexistence of deviant sexual behaviors among most of the IV drug abusers, it is difficult to say that IV drug abuse alone is the causative factor for HIV seropositivity in all of them. Further research on IV drug abusers is indicated in order to ascertain whether the HIV transmission in them is through IV route or through their sexual contact, and also the differences, if any, in the nature of these two types of transmissions.

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