186057 Multi-group comparison of latent class analyses of substance use and sexual behavior typologies in adolescence across racial/ethnic groups

Monday, October 27, 2008: 11:06 AM

Tamika Gilreath, PhD , School of Social Work, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
Christian Connell, PhD , Department of Psychiatry, Yale University, New Haven, CT
Adolescent involvement in risky behaviors poses a significant risk for health problems that can persist into adulthood. The present study uses latent class analysis to identify typologies based upon two domains of risk behavior: (1) substance use, and (2) sexual behaviors. Previously, studies have included minority adolescents in latent class models (LCA) and used race as an independent variable. The present study seeks to verify that ATOD and risky sexual behavior classes are the same across race/ethnicity. Within the context of multigroup analysis comparing racial/ethnic groups, a model is tested that investigates the relation between substance use class membership and sexual behavior class membership, as well as the direct effects associated with youth age and gender.

Data were from the 2005 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey. Questions related to substance use include self-reported use of alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, and crack/cocaine; sexual behavior was assessed based upon self-reported age of first sexual intercourse, number of partners (lifetime and past 6 months), and condom use.

Preliminary analyses have identified three classes of adolescent substance use (abstainers/mild experimenters, mild alcohol, and polysubstance). Four classes of sexual risk behavior were identified (abstainers, monogamous, moderate risk, and risky sex). Models identify significant differences in response probabilities within classes (e.g., African Americans in the polysubstance use class reported lower probabilities of binge drinking) across groups. The results of these analyses can be used to make recommendations for preventive interventions targeting substance use and risky sexual behaviors among specific groups of minority adolescents in the United States.

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the influence of age and gender on ATOD use and sexual risk behaviors. Identify differences in substance use and sexual risk typologies across racial/ethnic groups. Recognize the need for interventions tailored to adolescent subgroups.

Keywords: Adolescents, Drug Use

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have experience in performing secondary data analysis using large nationally representative datasets. I have experience collecting and assessing data related to minority adolescent health.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.