Background: Adolescents experience elevated rates of STDs and HIV. STD/HIV prevention interventions for young men are crucial to decrease their STD/HIV rates and reduce disease transmission to female partners. To advance sexual health promotion interventions for young men, this paper reviewed the efficacy of STD/HIV prevention interventions conducted in North and Central America in the past 20 years. Method: PubMed, Google Scholar, and EBSCO Host databases were used to locate STD/HIV interventions. Eligible interventions were limited to STD/HIV interventions for young men between the ages of 10 and 18. We review 8 STD/HIV prevention interventions targeting heterosexual adolescent males and summarize key intervention components and content, overview intervention efficacy outcome data, and provide directions for future research. Results: The majority of interventions were guided by health behavior change theory. Interventions employed interactive group-based education and behavioral skills training to reduce risky sexual behaviors. All interventions used a randomized controlled trial design with a comparison or control group. Follow-up times varied markedly, ranging from 3 weeks to 36 months. All but one intervention improved at least one behavioral outcome (e.g., increased frequency of condom use). Conclusions: Findings suggest that male adolescent interventions can effectively curtail the STD/HIV epidemic. Major weaknesses of the reviewed studies include the reliance on self-report behavioral measures, lack of biological endpoints, and short follow-ups. Study strengths include use of randomized control trial design and theory-based content. Future research should increase the dissemination of effective sexual risk reduction interventions to decrease STD/HIV among adolescent males and their female partners.
- African-American adolescent males
- STD/HIV prevention interventions
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health