, Volume 42, Issue 1, pp 111-119
Date: 15 Apr 2011

Sexual HIV Transmission and Antiretroviral Therapy: A Prospective Cohort Study of Behavioral Risk Factors Among Men and Women Living with HIV/AIDS

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Using antiretroviral therapies for HIV prevention relies on patient adherence and avoidance of co-occurring sexually transmitted infections.


The objective of this study is to simultaneously examine HIV treatment adherence and sexual risks for HIV transmission.


This study is a prospective cohort of 201 men and 55 women diagnosed with HIV/AIDS infection.


A total of 32% men and 39% women engaged in unprotected intercourse with at least one HIV negative or unknown HIV status sex partner over 12 months. Nearly half (46%) of participants with HIV negative or unknown HIV status unprotected sex partners had detectable HIV viral load and were significantly more likely to have contracted a sexually transmitted infection since their HIV diagnosis. Individuals at higher risk for transmitting HIV were also less adherent to antiretroviral therapies.


Programs that aim to use antiretroviral therapies for HIV prevention require careful attention to adherence, sexually transmitted co-infections, and substance use.