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Risk factors and determinants of HIV and Hepatitis C prevalence and incidence among a cohort of young injection drug users Miller, Caroline L.


Objectives: The primary objectives of this study were to determine the prevalence, incidence and risk factors for HIV and Hepatitis C (HCV) infection among young (aged 13 - 24 years) injection drug users (IDUs) participating in the Vancouver Injection Drug Users Study (VIDUS). Methods: This study was a nested sub-study within the VIDUS project. The VIDUS is an open cohort consisting of over 1,400 Vancouver area IDUs. Participants must be aged 13 years and older, have injected illicit drugs at least once in the previous month and reside i n the greater Vancouver area. Enrolment into the study began in 1996, and the majority of participants were enrolled between 1996 and 1997. Since 1997, on average, 100 new study participants have been enrolled each year. At baseline and semi-annually thereafter, subjects undergo an interviewer-administered questionnaire and provide a venous blood sample for HIV and HCV antibody testing. Questionnaires are administered in English, Spanish, Mandarin, French and Cantonese and elicit information on participants' risk factors and living conditions in the previous six months. Nonparametric and multivariate regression methods were used when analyses were conducted on cross-sectional data. Longitudinal data were analyzed using person-time techniques. Results: Baseline HCV prevalence was 46% (107) and was associated with being Aboriginal, incarceration in the previous 6 months, survival sex,

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