Multiple routes of drug administration and HIV risk among injecting drug users

Sigrid Vorobjov, Anneli Uusküla, Don C. Des Jarlais, Katri Abel-Ollo, Ave Talu, Kristi Rüütel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study assesses relationships between drug administration routes and HIV serostatus, drug use, and sexual behaviors among current injecting drug users (IDUs) in Tallinn, Estonia. We recruited 350 IDUs for a cross-sectional risk behavior survey. Adjusted odds ratios (AORs) were calculated to explore injection risk behavior, sexual behavior, and HIV serostatus associated with multiple route use. Focus groups explored reasons why injectors might use non-injecting routes of administration. Those reporting multiple drug administration routes were less likely to be HIV seropositive (AOR = 0.49, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.25-0.97) and had almost twice the odds of having more than one sexual partner (AOR = 1.90, 95% CI = 1.01-3.60) and of reporting having sexually transmitted diseases (AOR = 2.38, 95% CI = 1.02-5.59). IDUs who engage in noninjecting drug use may be reducing their risk of acquiring HIV though sharing injection equipment, but if infected may be a critical group for sexual transmission of HIV to people who do not inject drugs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)413-420
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Substance Abuse Treatment
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jun 2012


  • HIV
  • Illicit drug use
  • Injecting drug use
  • Risk behavior
  • Sexual risk behaviors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Phychiatric Mental Health
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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