Running with scissors: A systematic review of substance use and the pre-exposure prophylaxis care continuum among sexual minority men


PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Patterns of sexualized drug use, including stimulants (e.g., methamphetamine) and chemsex drugs, are key drivers of HIV incidence among sexual minority men (SMM). Although pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) mitigates HIV risk, there is no consensus regarding the associations of substance use with the PrEP care continuum. RECENT FINDINGS: SMM who use substances are as likely or more likely to use PrEP. Although SMM who use stimulants experience greater difficulties with daily oral PrEP adherence, some evidence shows that SMM who use stimulants or chemsex drugs may achieve better adherence in the context of recent condomless anal sex. Finally, SMM who use substances may experience greater difficulties with PrEP persistence (including retention in PrEP care). SMM who use stimulants and other substances would benefit from more comprehensive efforts to support PrEP re-uptake, adherence, and persistence, including delivering behavioral interventions, considering event-based dosing, and providing injectable PrEP.


Viamonte M, Ghanooni D, Reynolds JM, Grov C, Carrico AW




  • Population(s)
    • Men who have sex with men
    • People who use drugs
    • General HIV- population
  • Prevention, Engagement and Care Cascade
    • Prevention
  • Prevention
    • Biomedical interventions


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