A 12-step counseling program may help people addicted to cocaine reduce their drug habit and significantly decrease their HIV risk as well. In a report recently published in the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes
, researchers discussed changes in HIV risk among 487 people undergoing treatment for cocaine addiction. The participants who received both individual and group drug counseling had the most improvement. After 6 months, average cocaine use went from 10 days per month to 1 day per month. HIV risk reduction corresponded with less drug use and improvement in psychiatric symptoms. Race, gender, sexual orientation, or the presence of antisocial personality disorder did not alter the results.