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Incidence and Predictors of Adolescent’s Early Sexual Debut after Three Decades of HIV Interventions in Tanzania: A Time to Debut Analysis
Published: Friday, July 27, 2012
Author: Elia John Mmbaga et al.

by Elia John Mmbaga, Frida Leonard, Germana Henry Leyna


To determine the incidence and predictors of adolescent’s early sexual debut after three decades of HIV interventions in Tanzania.


In a cross-section study of adolescents aged 16–19 residing in Morogoro Municipality, information on socio-demographic, parental-and-peer communication, and sexual behaviors were collected. Cox-regression analysis was used to examine predictors of time to sexual debut.


A total of 316 adolescents with mean age of 17.5±0.9 were recruited. Half (48.7%) of adolescent were sexually active with mean age at sexual debut of 14.6±2.3. Of these, 57.8% had sex before their 15th birthday with incidence of early sexual debut of 17.4/1000 person-years at risk. Adolescent family characteristics, peer pressure, alcohol use, parental and peer communication were key predictors of early sexual debut.


Parental and peer communication strategies works calling for efforts to increase its scope to reach all adolescents alongside promoting family stability and reducing adolescent alcohol consumption.