Meth use now boosting HIV risks for straight men too

Risky sex linked with meth use is a problem for both gay and straight men

BY admin

March 21 2006 1:00 AM ET

New data from the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that
crystal meth use is not just a problem for gay men anymore.
Heterosexual men are more commonly using the drug and
putting themselves at risk for HIV by engaging in
risky sex while high on meth, the San Francisco
Chronicle
reports. A study of 1,000 Northern
California heterosexual men shows that 6% of the men
reported meth use in the previous six months, and that
among the meth users 57% had multiple sex partners,
compared with 26% of men who did not use meth.
Heterosexual meth users also were more likely to report
having unprotected sex and to engage in anal sex with
female partners than nonusers, both of which put them
at increased risk for sexually transmitted diseases,
including HIV.

The CDC
researchers say HIV prevention programs that target meth use
among gay men should be expanded or duplicated for
heterosexual meth users. They also urge medical
providers and support centers to offer referrals to
meth treatment and substance abuse programs for heterosexual
meth users.

Several studies
have linked crystal meth use with risky sex and increased
HIV risks among gay men across the United States,
particularly in large urban areas. A recent study of
San Francisco gay men showed gay and bisexual meth
users were three times more likely to be infected with HIV
than nonusers. (The Advocate)

Tags: Health

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