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Sexual Behavior Differences Between Amphetamine-Type Stimulants Users and Heroin Users

Jia, Zhen-jun PhD; Yan, Shi-yan PhD; Bao, Yan-ping PhD; Lian, Zhi MD; Zhang, Hao-ran PhD; Liu, Zhi-min MD

doi: 10.1097/ADM.0b013e3182a952b2
Original Research

Objectives: To explore the sexual behavior of amphetamine-type stimulant (ATS) users and heroin users, and to find out the dangerous sexual behaviors, even related risk factors among them.

Methods: Four hundred thirty-eight ATS users and 524 heroin users were recruited in 10 compulsory detoxification treatment centers and voluntary detoxification centers in Beijing, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Xi'an, and Taiyuan. Their sociodemographic characteristics, history of drug taking, and sexual behaviors were surveyed.

Results: Many variables of sociodemographic characteristics and sexual behaviors were significantly different between ATS users and heroin users (P < 0.05). Dangerous sexual behaviors among ATS users include sexual intercourse often or each time after taking drug (30.1%), multiple sexual intercourse (16.5%), casual sex partners (34.0%), homosexual partners (2.5%), and never or occasionally using condom with a steady sex partner (79.3%) or with casual sex partners (39.1%). The rate of ever-infecting sexually transmitted disease (STD) was high in both the groups (ATS, 20.5%; heroin, 30.9%).

Conclusions: Sexual behavior is the main way to transmit STD and human immunodeficiency virus among ATS users. The study results will promote the government's awareness of the issue and take necessary steps to slow the spread of STD and human immunodeficiency virus among the ATS users.

From the School of Public Health (ZJJ, HRZ, ZML) and National Institute on Drug Dependence (YPB, ZL, ZML, HRZ), Peking University, Beijing, People's Republic of China; Department of Criminal Science and Technology (ZJJ), People's Public Security University of China, Beijing, People's Republic of China; Institute of Basic Research in Clinical Medicine (SYY), China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, Beijing, People's Republic of China.

Send correspondence and reprint requests to Zhi-min Liu, MD, National Institute on Drug Dependence, Peking University, 38, Xue Yuan Road, Hai Dian District, Beijing 100191, People's Republic of China. E-mail:

Supported by Twelfth Five-Year Project (no: 2012BAI01B07) and the Major State Basic Research Project (973 program, grant no. 2009CB522007), China.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Received August 23, 2012

Accepted August 07, 2013

© 2013 American Society of Addiction Medicine