AIDS and Behavior

, 15:1664 | Cite as

Adolescent Health-Risk Sexual Behaviors: Effects of a Drug Abuse Intervention

  • Hyman Hops
  • Timothy J. Ozechowski
  • Holly B. Waldron
  • Betsy Davis
  • Charles W. Turner
  • Janet L. Brody
  • Manuel Barrera
Original Paper


Adolescents who abuse substances are more likely to engage in health-risking sexual behavior (HRSB) and are at particularly high risk for HIV/AIDS. Thus, substance abuse treatment presents a prime opportunity to target HIV-risk behaviors. The present study evaluated a one-session HIV-risk intervention embedded in a controlled clinical trial for drug-abusing adolescents. The trial was conducted in New Mexico and Oregon with Hispanic and Anglo adolescents. Youths were randomly assigned to individual cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) or to an integrated behavioral and family therapy (IBFT) condition, involving individual and family sessions. The HIV-specific intervention was not associated with change. IBFT and CBT were both efficacious in reducing HIV-risk behaviors from intake to the 18-month follow-up for high-risk adolescents. For low-risk adolescents, CBT (versus IBFT) was more efficacious in suppressing HRSB. These data suggest that drug abuse treatments can have both preventative and intervention effects for adolescents, depending on their relative HIV-risk.


Adolescent Substance-abuse Treatment HIV-risk 


Los adolescentes que abusan de sustancias tienen más probabilidades de involucrarse en comportamientos sexuales de riesgo (HRSB) y están en riesgo particularmente alto de VIH/SIDA. Por lo tanto, el tratamiento de abuso de sustancias presenta una oportunidad única para orientar los comportamientos de riesgo de VIH. El presente estudio evaluó una intervención de un período de sesiones de riesgo de VIH en un ensayo clínico aleatorio para el tratamiento de toxicómanos adolescentes. El ensayo se llevó a cabo tanto en Nuevo México y Oregon, con adolescentes hispanos y anglos, con evaluaciones al inicio, después del tratamiento y seguimiento. Los jóvenes fueron asignados aleatoriamente a dos tipos de tratamiento basado en la evidencia, una terapia individual cognitivoconductual (TCC) o un tratamiento integrado del TCC y Terapia de Familia Funcional (es decir, IBFT) con sesiones individuales y familiares. Los resultados mostraron que la intervención específicas para el VIH no se asoció con el cambio. Sin embargo, IBFT y TCC fueron eficaces en la reducción de conductas de riesgo de VIH a partir del consumo de los adolescentes de 18 meses de seguimiento de alto riesgo. Para los adolescentes de bajo riesgo, la TCC fue más eficaz en la supresión de HRSB en comparación con IBFT. Estos datos sugieren que los tratamientos del abuso de drogas puede tener efectos preventivos y de intervención de los adolescentes, en función de su relación de riesgo de VIH.



We gratefully acknowledge the contributions of Gael Johnson in the preparation of this article, the many families that participated in this research, and the therapists and research assistants who made this work possible. This manuscript was supported by National Institute on Drug Research Grants R01DA13350, R01DA13354.

Supplementary material

10461_2011_19_MOESM1_ESM.docx (123 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 123 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hyman Hops
    • 1
  • Timothy J. Ozechowski
    • 1
  • Holly B. Waldron
    • 1
  • Betsy Davis
    • 1
  • Charles W. Turner
    • 1
  • Janet L. Brody
    • 1
  • Manuel Barrera
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Oregon Research InstituteEugeneUSA
  2. 2.Psychology DepartmentArizona State UniversityTempeUSA

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