US Latina age of sexual debut: Long-term associations and implications for HIV and drug abuse prevention

Frank R. Dillon, Mario De La Rosa, Seth J. Schwartz, Patria Rojas, Rui Duan, Robert M. Malow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations


This cross-sectional study explored associations among (a) age of sexual debut; (b) drug abuse; and (c) sexual risk behaviors among an urban community-based sample of 158 predominantly immigrant, Latina adults. Time in the USA and having a mother who used drugs during the participants' childhood or adolescence were significantly related to age of sexual debut. In turn, younger ages of sexual debut were associated with drug abuse and more sexual risk behaviors (greater number of sexual partners, more frequent alcohol and drug use before or during sex, greater levels of intoxication from alcohol or drugs during sex). Implications for HIV/AIDS and drug abuse clinical services and future research with US Latina populations are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)431-440
Number of pages10
JournalAIDS Care - Psychological and Socio-Medical Aspects of AIDS/HIV
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2010



  • Drug abuse
  • Hispanic
  • HIV risk
  • Immigrant
  • Latina
  • Sexual debut

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health(social science)
  • Social Psychology

Cite this