Instead of assuming a continuous distribution of trajectories within the population, group-based approach assumes that the population is composed of a mixture of distinct groups defined by the developmental pathways. Overall, participants were well-educated, with mean of Trajectory analyses The three-group model was found to be the best model Figure 1.
Venues of seeking new partners At visit 50, we examined the venues through which participants met new sexual partners in the past 6 months. Average posterior group membership probabilities AvePP for the three-group model ranged 0. For the analysis, the number of male partners with whom participants had oral or anal intercourse in the past 6 months was used as the dependent variable. For dichotomous behavioral and psychological measures e. In other words, group-based modeling can be used to identify trajectories of qualitatively different groups while standard growth modeling quantifies a change process in which common trajectory exists in the population. After the optimum number of trajectories was selected, the trend of each trajectory linear, quadratic, cubic function of age was determined. The participants recorded the frequency of each psychological symptom in the previous week by assigning a value as follows: Binge drinking was defined as five or more drinks per occasion occurring at least monthly. In a subanalysis, we found that the result did not change when the data for sexual partners greater than 30 were deleted from the analysis. Since participants were interviewed at six-month intervals, age was then rounded off to the nearest half-year e. Sociodemographic characteristics Participant age was calculated by using the date of each visit minus the date of birth for each participant. Trajectory analyses The three-group model was found to be the best model Figure 1. Raw data were used to calculate the average numbers of sexual partners after the trajectory groups were identified. For brevity, the variable will be referred to as the number of sexual partners throughout the rest of the paper. The five subscales are 1 reduced HIV concern e. Overall, participants were well-educated, with mean of To summarize results of the continuous variables, mean scores of the measures of interest e. At the end of the study period, a total of participants A semi-parametric, group-based approach was used to identify various clusters of individual growth trajectories [ 23 ]. Further, chi-square tests and analysis of variance ANOVA were used to test group differences in demographic, behavioral, and psychosocial characteristics. Data for this variable range from 0 to , with sexual partners greater than 30 constituting the top 5th percentile of the data range 31— Trajectories were modeled as a function of age rather than visit. These venues or means of meeting new partners include internet, party, advertisement in a newspaper, bar, bathhouse, park or outdoor public place, and others. Years of education were recorded when the participants were enrolled to the study. Individual risk behavior Participants were asked if they were currently using the following drugs in the previous six months: Detailed information about the formulation and selection of group-based models have been described Nagin , This group-based approach to analyzing longitudinal data has several advantages over traditional statistical methods.
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