AIDS patient care and STDs 2017 04 21() doi 10.1089/apc.2016.0265
This study examines the implications of a history of personal violence on health and health behaviors. A secondary analysis of cross-sectional data involving adults (n = 214) from a semirural area in southern Louisiana between October 2008 and December 2010 was conducted to ascertain the association between a personal history of violence victimization and indicators of sexual health behaviors and outcomes: communication with sexual partners about HIV status, consistent condom use, and sexually transmitted infection (STI). While violence victimization is widely accepted as a risk factor for high-risk sex behavior, the mechanisms underlying violence victimization’s influence on sexual health outcomes remain unclear. Bivariate analyses demonstrated a significant positive association between experience of physical abuse and lifetime history of STI. Surprisingly, respondents reporting lifetime physical violence were more than two times more likely to ask sexual partners about HIV status [odds ratio (OR) for physical attack = 2.23, 95% confidence intervals (CI) = 1.00-4.97; OR for physical injury = 4.60, 95% CI = 1.79-11.85]. Consistent condom use was not significantly associated with violence exposure in adjusted models. There was no evidence that communication with sexual partners mediated the relationship between experiences of violence and condom use. The link between personal history of violence and condom use may be mediated through alternative pathways beyond communication.