Sex while intoxicated: a meta-analysis comparing heterosexual and sexual minority youth.

Published: March 1, 2011

Abstract

BACKGROUND: The social marginalization and victimization experienced by sexual minority youth (SMY) may lead to increased risk behaviors and higher rates of negative health outcomes compared with their heterosexual peers.

METHODS: We conducted a meta-analysis to examine whether SMY reported higher rates of sex while intoxicated. Studies that report rates of substance use during sex in both SMY and heterosexual youth and had a mean participant age of 18 or less were included in our meta-analysis. Effect sizes were extracted from six studies (nine independent data sets and 24 effect sizes) that met study criteria and had high inter-rater reliability (.98).

RESULTS: Results indicated that SMY were almost twice as likely to report sex while intoxicated as compared with heterosexual peers. A random-effects meta-analysis showed a moderate ([overall weighted effect OR] = 1.91, p < .0001) weighted effect size for the relationship between sexual orientation and the use of drugs at the time of sexual intercourse, with the mean effect size for each study ranging from 1.21 to 3.50 and individual effect sizes ranging from .35 to 9.86.

DISCUSSION: Our findings highlight the need for healthcare providers to screen SMY for participation in substance use during sexual intercourse and to offer risk reduction counseling during office visits.

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