This study describes HIV-related behaviors recorded through a questionnaire applied to 570 individuals in Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, who were not regular drug users. Mean age was 30.3 years, 51.1 % were male, and most were low-income (59.1%). The HIV seropositive rate was 9.9% (13.1% for males, 6.9% for females), and there was a positive association with male gender, age over 30 years, and low income. Women reported more unprotected sex (86.4%) than men (74.4%) and more sex involving drugs (11.6% vs. 2.1%); men reported more unprotected homosexual sex (18.7% vs. 1.4%) and more sex with sex workers (19.0% vs. 0.4%). There was no association between sporadic drug use and seropositive status. The association between age and seropositive status confirms previous findings, indicating more lifetime risk exposure. The study confirms the so-called pauperization of the epidemic, with poor individuals showing a higher seropositive rate. Males and females showed different behaviors associated with seropositive status, confirming the need for specific and differentiated preventive strategies for each group.
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome; Drug Abuse; Risk Behavior; Serologic Tests