Objective: To describe the relationship between condom use and use of other contraceptives among human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected women.
Methods: We interviewed 1232 women, 18-50 years of age, who had had sex with a man in the prior 12 months and who were reported with AIDS or HIV to local health departments in 12 states and cities in the United States. These women were asked about condom use and other contraceptive use in the past year.
Results: Forty-seven percent of women reported using condoms as a form of contraception in the past 12 months. Thirty-four percent of the 286 women who had had a tubal ligation and 42% of the 182 women who used oral contraceptives (OC) used condoms. When we controlled for all factors associated with failing to use condoms, women who had had a tubal ligation (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 1.72, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.28-2.33), women who used OCs (adjusted OR 1.44, CI 1.00-2.08), and women who were unaware of the HIV status of their most recent steady sex partner (adjusted OR 1.72, CI 1.28-2.31) were the least likely to use condoms.
Conclusion: Human immunodeficiency virus-infected women who used more effective contraceptive methods were the least likely to have male sex partners who used condoms. In counseling women at high risk of transmitting HIV, health care providers should discuss reasons for using contraceptives (ie, preventing pregnancy versus preventing HIV transmission) and ensure that women understand that different forms of contraceptives may be needed to achieve those different purposes.