Patterns of disclosure among youth who are HIV-positive: a multisite study

J Adolesc Health. 2012 Mar;50(3):315-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2011.06.003. Epub 2011 Sep 3.


Purpose: Disclosure of serostatus is critical in preventing the transmission of HIV among youth. The purpose of this exploratory study was to describe serostatus disclosure in a multisite study of youth living with HIV.

Methods: This study investigated serostatus disclosure and its relationship to unprotected sex among 146 youth participating in a multisite study of young people living with HIV who were sexually active within the past 3 months.

Results: Forty percent of participants reported a sexual relationship with a partner to whom they had not disclosed their serostatus. Participants with multiple sexual partners were less likely to disclose their serostatus than those with one partner. Disclosure was more frequent when the serostatus of the sexual partner was known. Disclosure was not associated with unprotected sex.

Conclusions: Prevention initiatives should focus on both disclosure and condom use in this high-risk population, particularly for youth with multiple sexual partners.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Condoms / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • HIV Seropositivity / psychology*
  • HIV Seropositivity / transmission
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Risk-Taking
  • Truth Disclosure*
  • Unsafe Sex / psychology*
  • Unsafe Sex / statistics & numerical data*
  • Young Adult