Amphetamine-group substances and HIV

Lancet. 2010 Aug 7;376(9739):458-74. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(10)60753-2.


Amphetamine-group substances are used worldwide and are more prevalent than either cocaine or opioids. We reviewed published reports about amphetamine-group substances and did a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials of behavioural interventions for their use. Most research was done in developed countries. Many, but not all, studies show an association between amphetamine-group substance use and risk of HIV infection. Much use of amphetamine-group substances is non-injection and is associated with increased HIV risk, particularly in men who have sex with men. The structural, social, interpersonal, and personal factors that link to amphetamine-group substance use and HIV risk are poorly understood. 13 studies, with a cumulative sample size of 1997 individuals, qualified for the meta-analysis. Overall, high-intensity behavioural interventions were moderately effective in reducing use of amphetamine-group substances (effect size 0.28, 95% CI 0.13-0.44). We did not find conclusive evidence that behavioural interventions as a group are more effective than are passive or minium treatment for reduction of amphetamine-group substance use or sexual risk behaviours. The search for effective, scalable, and sustainable interventions for amphetamine-group substance use, including pharmacotherapies, should be supported and encouraged.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Amphetamine-Related Disorders / complications*
  • Amphetamine-Related Disorders / epidemiology
  • Amphetamine-Related Disorders / rehabilitation
  • Behavior Therapy
  • HIV Infections / diagnosis
  • HIV Infections / prevention & control
  • HIV Infections / transmission*
  • Humans
  • Needle-Exchange Programs
  • Prevalence
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Risk-Taking
  • Sexual Behavior
  • Substance Abuse, Intravenous / complications