Christer Lidman group

Drug related infections in injecting drug users (IDU)

IDUs are at risk for contracting hepatitis (A, B, C) and/or hiv infection because of environmental factors, behavior and risk behavior. We are studying the epidemiology of drug related infections, and the effect antiviral drug treatment in IDUs.

We expect that our studies will improve the understanding the spread of drug related infections for prevention of bacterial and viral infections and that the antiviral drug treatment in IDUs will be further improved.

Keywords: hepatitis, hiv injecting drug user, IDU antiviral treatment


Christer Lidman, Group Leader, holds a Ph.D. degree in Infectious Diseases, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden (1993) and associate Professor in Infectious Diseases at Karolinska Institutet since 2003.

Lillebil Nordén, holds a Ph.D in Psychiatry, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden (2009).
Martin Kåberg, MD, PhD student


Injecting drug users (IDU) are at risk for acquiring blood borne diseases

Prevention of drug related infections can be supported by needle exchange programme (NEP), reducing the prevalence of active/contagious infection and reducing the risk behavior. In Stockholm there is no access to clean needles. So far epidemiology data suggest that in Stockholm the hiv prevalence is high compared to several other western European countries and that exposure to hepatitis C is almost twice as common in Stockholm compared to cities in the Netherlands, and further about 40% of the IDUs in Stockholm have no protection against hepatitis B.

Antiviral treatment for hiv or hepatitis C can be a complicated and demanding task, due lifestyle and dual/triple diagnoses among the infected individuals.

Our studies are focused on epidemiological surveys, with focus on finding different causes to the high frequency of drug related infections in Stockholm compared to other cities. Changing injecting risk behavior with motivation interview (MI) as tool is investigated, finding hidden populations using respondent driven sampling (RDS) is used in another project.

The effect of antiviral treatment as well as compliance and cofactors are studied in current clinical medical practice. Treatment of hepatitis C in prison is an example of a project which is starting in 2012.

Open positions

We always want to get in touch with talented potential co-workers. If you are interested in doing research within our group, as a degree project or as a researcher, please contact the Group Leader Christer Lidman for further information: