Sexual health behavior interventions for U.S. Latino adolescents: a systematic review of the literature

J Pediatr Adolesc Gynecol. 2012 Apr;25(2):136-149. doi: 10.1016/j.jpag.2011.09.011. Epub 2011 Dec 28.

Abstract

Study objective: To identify sexual health behavior interventions targeting U.S. Latino adolescents.

Design: A systematic literature review.

Setting: Peer-reviewed articles published between 1993 and 2011, conducted in any type of setting.

Participants: Male and female Latino adolescents ages 11-21 years.

Interventions: Interventions promoting sexual abstinence, pregnancy prevention, sexually transmitted infection (STI) prevention, and/or HIV/AIDS prevention.

Main outcome measures: Changes in knowledge, attitudes, engagement in risky sexual behaviors, rates of STIs, and/or pregnancy.

Results: Sixty-eight articles were identified. Fifteen were included in this review that specifically addressed Latino adolescent sexual health behavior. Among the reviewed interventions, most aimed to prevent or reduce STI and HIV/AIDS incidence by focusing on behavior change at two levels of the social ecological model: individual and interpersonal. Major strengths of the articles included addressing the most critical issues of sexual health; using social ecological approaches; employing different strategies to deliver sexual health messages; and employing different intervention designs in diverse geographical locations with the largest population of Latino communities. Most of the interventions targeted female adolescents, stressing the need for additional interventions that target Latino adolescent males.

Conclusions: Latino adolescent sexual health is a new research field with gaps that need to be addressed in reducing negative sexual health outcomes among this population. More research is needed to produce new or validate existing, age-specific, and culturally-sensitive sexual health interventions for Latino male and female adolescents. Further, this research should also be conducted in areas of the U.S. with the newest Latino migration (e.g., North Carolina).

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Contraception
  • Health Education / methods*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Health Promotion / methods*
  • Hispanic Americans / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Sexual Behavior* / psychology
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases / prevention & control