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Associations with drug use and sexualised drug use among women who have sex with women (WSW) in the UK: Findings from the LGBT Sex and Lifestyles Survey

Hibbert, MP, Porcellato, LA, Brett, CE and Hope, VD (2019) Associations with drug use and sexualised drug use among women who have sex with women (WSW) in the UK: Findings from the LGBT Sex and Lifestyles Survey. International Journal of Drug Policy. ISSN 0955-3959

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Associations with drug use and sexualised drug use among women who have sex with women (WSW) in the UK Findings from the LGBT Sex and Lifestyles Survey.pdf - Accepted Version
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Abstract

Introduction Studies indicate that women who have sex with women (WSW) report greater levels of drug use than heterosexual women, but globally few studies have looked at sexualised drug use among WSW. This study investigated the factors associated with drug use and sexualised drug use (SDU) among WSW.
Methods Potential participants across the UK were invited to take part in a cross-sectional anonymous online survey between April-June 2018. The LGBT Sex and Lifestyles Survey recruited participants through Facebook advertising and social media posts from community organisations. Multivariate logistic regression was used to compare WSW who had engaged in any drug use in the past 12 months with those who had not, and those who engaged in sexualised drug use in the past 12 months with those who engaged in other drug use.
Results: 1501 WSW could be included in the analyses (mean age = 28.9, 97% white ethnicity). Any drug use was reported by 39% of WSW (n = 583), 44% of which (17% of total, n = 258) reported SDU. Factors associated with drug use were identifying as queer (aOR = 1.86, 95%CI 1.08, 3.23), younger age (aOR = 0.96, 95%CI 0.95, 0.98), being born outside the UK (aOR = 1.75, 95%CI 1.15, 2.66), recent sexual assault (aOR = 2.35, 95%CI 1.43, 3.86), > = 5 female sexual partners (aOR = 3.81, 95%CI 1.81, 8.01), and psychological distress (aOR = 1.75, 95%CI 1.15, 2.67). SDU was associated with identifying as bisexual (aOR = 2.55, 95%CI 1.69, 3.86), > = 5 female sexual partners (aOR = 4.50, 95%CI 1.91, 10.59), and highest education achieved at 16 or lower (aOR = 2.46, 95%CI 1.24, 4.90).
Conclusions: Some WSW may have negative experiences in relation to drug use and SDU. Harm reduction and health services that provide services for WSW should be aware of potentially compounding factors related to drug use, such as sexual assault and psychological distress, providing a safe and LGBT-friendly environment to discuss these issues.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 11 Medical and Health Sciences, 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences, 16 Studies in Human Society
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine > RA0440 Study and Teaching. Research
Divisions: Natural Sciences & Psychology (closed 31 Aug 19)
Public Health Institute
Publisher: Elsevier BV
Date Deposited: 09 Aug 2019 09:16
Last Modified: 09 Aug 2019 09:16
DOI or Identification number: 10.1016/j.drugpo.2019.07.034
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/11131

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