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'Don't know' and 'didn't think of it': condom use at first intercourse by Latino adolescents

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We examined the specific reasons Latino adolescents did or did not use condoms at first intercourse and their specific reasons for their perceived risk for contracting HIV. Latino adolescents (n = 618), ages 11-19, completed a face-to-face interview that included information on demographics (sex, age, family-status (lives with both natural parents versus other family structure) and country of birth) and sexual behaviour. The respondents cited 'don't know' (25.9%), 'not available' (25.9%) and 'didn't think of it' (23.5%) as the most frequent reasons for not using condoms at first intercourse. Anyone can get it (41.8%), unknown knowledge of partner's serostatus (24.7%) and unprotected sex (23.8%) were the top three reasons for perceiving oneself as being at risk for contracting HIV. Sexually active adolescents were more likely to perceive themselves at risk for contracting HIV than adolescents that had not had sex. Males were significantly more likely to report using condoms for protection at first intercourse than females. The remaining demographic factors were not significantly related to use of condoms at first intercourse nor to perceived risk for contracting HIV.

Document Type: Original Article


Affiliations: 1: University of California, Los Angeles, USA 2: University of California, Los Angeles, California State University, Northridge, USA 3: University of California, Los Angeles, California State University, Long Beach, USA 4: California State University, Long Beach, USA

Publication date: 2001-06-01

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