Objective: We sought to determine the prevalence of any alcohol use and hazardous alcohol consumption among HIV-infected individuals engaged in care and to identify factors associated with hazardous alcohol use.
Methods: During 2003, 951 patients were interviewed at 14 HIV primary care sites in the USA. Hazardous drinking was defined as >14 drinks/week or >or=5 drinks/occasion for men and >7 drinks/week or >or=4 drinks/occasion for women. Moderate alcohol use was consumption at less than hazardous levels. We used logistic regression to identify factors associated with any alcohol use and hazardous alcohol use.
Results: Forty per cent of the sample reported any alcohol use in the 4 weeks prior to the interview; 11% reported hazardous use. In multivariate regression, male sex [adjusted odds ratio (AOR) 1.52 (95% confidence interval, CI, 1.07-2.16)], a college education (compared to<high school) [AOR 1.87 (1.10-3.18)] and illicit drug use [AOR 2.69 (1.82-3.95)] were associated positively with any alcohol use, while CD4 nadir >or=500 cells/microL [AOR 2.65 (1.23-5.69)] and illicit drug use [AOR 2.67 (1.48-4.82)] were associated with increased odds of hazardous alcohol use (compared to moderate and none).
Conclusions: Alcohol use is prevalent among HIV-infected individuals and is associated with a variety of socioeconomic and demographic characteristics. Screening for alcohol use should be routine practice in HIV primary care settings.