An investigation of condom use by frequency of sex

M. Williams, M. W. Ross, A. M. Bowen, S. Timpson, H. V. McCoy, K. Perkins, L. Saunders, P. Young

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Objectives: To examine the association between condom use and frequency of sex across sexual partner types. Methods: Data were collected from African American drug users residing in Washington, DC. Participants were asked to provide the first name of the last three partners with whom they had had vaginal sex, to define the type of relationship, the number of times they had had vaginal sex in the last 30 days with each partner, and whether they had used a condom during their last sexual encounter with each partner. Condom use was examined by frequency of sex in the past 30 days controlling for partner type. Results' Frequency of sexual encounters varied by partner type. The largest number of sexual encounters was with casual partners, followed by commercial and primary partners, respectively. Within partner types, participants had sex most frequently with primary partners. Condom use was lowest within primary partner relationships. Regardless of partner type, condom use varied consistently depending on the frequency of sex with the same partner. Conclusions: Condom use is related to the frequency of sex between partners when partner type is controlled. The association between frequency of sex and condom use is independent of partner type, suggesting that partner type may become less influential in determining condom use as the frequency of sex increases. This finding suggests that contextual factors determining condom use go beyond partner type designations and include other relationship variables.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)433-435
Number of pages3
JournalSexually Transmitted Infections
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2001


  • Condom use
  • Drug users
  • HIV
  • Sexual transmission

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Infectious Diseases


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