Substance Use Among Middle-Aged Hispanic Men Who Have Sex With Men (HMSM) in South Florida
Beatriz Valdes, PhD, RN, CHSE, RN
- Sigma Affiliation
- Beta Tau
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In 2014, Hispanics represented 17% of the population but accounted for 24% (10, 887) of the estimated 44, 784 new diagnoses of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection in the US, and 86% (9, 379) of these cases were in men, of which 84% (7, 893) of the estimated HIV diagnosis among Hispanic men were attributed to Hispanic men who have sex with men (HMSM). If current diagnosis rates continue, estimates indicate that 1 in 4 HMSM will be diagnosed with HIV infection during their lifetime. An abundance of research demonstrates a consistent association between alcohol and substance use and high risk sexual practices among HMSM. High risk sexual behaviors include: unprotected anal intercourse (UAI), multiple partners, and sex under the influence of alcohol or drugs. This study explored the effects that substance use has on high risk sexual behaviors which predispose middle aged HMSM to STIs and HIV infection risk.
A non-experimental, cross-sectional research method design was used to collect data from a sample of 150 urban HMSM aged 40 to 65 residing in South Florida. Participants completed standardized measures of substance use, sexual behaviors, and demographic characteristics. This study was part of a larger study funded by Sigma Theta Tau International-Beta Tau Chapter.
The sample included 150 HMSM, with a mean age of 45.54 (SD = 4.71), ranging from 40 to 60 years. Most of the participants were foreign-born 86% (n = 129). Fifty-two (34.7%) participants reported illicit drug use in the past 30 days. Alcohol was the most common substance used by participants in the past 30 days (106; 70.7%), followed by cigarettes (54; 36%), marijuana (28; 18.7%), amil nitrates (14; 9.3%), prescription narcotics (13; 8.7%), club drugs, i.e., Ectasy (9; 6%), and cocaine (7, 4.7%). Participants reported substance use while having sex (61; 40.7%); history of diagnosed sexually transmitted infections (57; 38%); unprotected sex with serodiscordant partner (21; 14%); participating in receptive anal intercourse, i.e., bottom partner (94; 62.7%); never using a condom as a receptive partner (22; 14.7%); occasionally using a condom as a receptive partner (90; 60%); and sex with women (12; 8%) and transgender persons (10; 6.7%). Number of sexual partners reported in the last three months ranged from 0 to 32, (M = 5.23, SD = 5.51).
As a population, Hispanic men continue to experience high rates of STIs and HIV infection. This study is the first step in developing interventions targeted to reduce STIs and HIV infection among Hispanic sexual minorities. This study is essential in providing data to direct programs of health education geared to decrease high risk sexual practices among sexual minorities, which will subsequently reduce morbidity and mortality of this high risk group. Future research should build on these findings to develop tailored risk reduction interventions.
|Review Type||Abstract Review Only: Reviewed by Event Host|
|Keywords||Hispanic men who have sex with men (HMSM);
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