Moderated Mediation of Perceived Intoxication and Sexual Arousal on Determinants of Sexual Risk Behavior in Men Who Have Sex with Men

Katherine A. Buckheit, Luke D. Mitzel, Stephen A. Maisto, Tibor Palfai, Peter Vanable

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Behavioral interventions remain the preferred strategy for reducing HIV-related risk behavior among men who have sex with men (MSM), one of the populations most affected by HIV. To improve intervention efforts, research is needed to identify cognitive-motivational factors that may play a role in sexual risk behaviors among MSM. This study sought to replicate and extend previous work from a heterosexual population that identified a serial mediation effect of perceived intoxication and subjective sexual arousal in the relationship between alcohol consumption and determinants of sexual risk in a population of MSM. Exploratory moderated mediation analyses tested subjective sexual arousal as a moderator of the indirect effect of alcohol consumption on determinants of sexual risk via perceived intoxication. Participants (N = 117 MSM, ages 21–50) were randomly assigned to one of six experimental conditions based on two manipulations: beverage condition (alcohol, placebo, or control) and sexual arousal (low or high). Dependent measures were likelihood to engage in risky sex and condom negotiation skills. Results did not support the serial mediation effect but showed some support for the moderated mediation model in the prediction of behavioral skills. Implications for alcohol and arousal myopia theories of risky behavior and HIV prevention efforts are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1460-1470
Number of pages11
JournalAIDS and Behavior
Volume23
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 15 2019

Keywords

  • Alcohol
  • Men who have sex with men
  • Perceived intoxication
  • Sexual arousal
  • Sexual risk

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases

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