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Proportion of long-term injection drug users as an indicator to characterize the state and prognosis of HIV-epidemic within a certain territory

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Author(s): Vasylyeva, Tetyana | Andreeva, Tatiana

Journal: Tobacco Control and Public Health in Eastern Europe
ISSN 2222-2693

Volume: 2;
Issue: S1;
Start page: 62;
Date: 2012;
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Keywords: injection drug user | HIV-epidemic | Ukraine

ABSTRACT
BACKGROUND: Epidemics of drug use and thus the spread of HIV have different duration in different regions, and, therefore, the prognosis of these epidemics may differ. We aimed to assess indicators measuring the peculiarities of injection drug use epidemics by region, informative for prevention activities among vulnerable to HIV groups. METHODS: Data from cross-sectional survey of 4026 injection drug users (IDUs) conducted in 2007 in Ukraine were analyzed. The outcome measure was a binary variable depicting whether a respondent injects drugs for 20 years and over. Binary Logistic Regression in SPSS software was used to test associations with socio-demographic characteristics. RESULTS: More respondents from Odessa, Mykolayiv, Dnipropetrovsk, Cherkassy, Poltava, and Crimea regions inject over 20 years. Older respondents were more likely to belong to the group of long-term users. Men were more likely to inject over 20 years than women. Those respondents who were married, but did not live with their spouse or other sexual partner were more likely to inject longer than 20 years compared to those single or in a stable marriage. Those respondents who use opiates or combine them with stimulants were more likely to inject over 20 years and those who use only stimulants were more likely to inject less than 20 years. CONCLUSION: Injection drug use in Ukraine started earlier among men, on certain territories and was associated with opiate use. Percentage of IDUs who inject for more than 20 years was found to be a good indicator to distinguish territories with long-lasting epidemics.
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