Journal of Sexually Transmitted Diseases The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2014 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. Young Risk Takers: Alcohol, Illicit Drugs, and Sexual Practices among a Sample of Music Festival Attendees Sun, 14 Dec 2014 00:10:09 +0000 Background. Alcohol and other drug use and sexual risk behaviour are increasing among young Australians, with associated preventable health outcomes such as sexually transmissible infections (STIs) on the rise. Methods. A cross-sectional study of young people’s health behaviours conducted at a music festival in Melbourne, Australia, in 2011. Results. 1365 young people aged 16–29 completed the survey; 62% were female with a mean age of 20 years. The majority (94%, ) reported drinking alcohol during the previous 12 months; among those, 32% reported “binge” drinking (6+ drinks) at least weekly. Half (52%) reported ever using illicit drugs and 25% reported past month use. One-quarter (27%) were identified as being at risk of STIs through unprotected sex with new or casual partners during the previous 12 months. Multivariable analyses found that risky sexual behaviour was associated with younger age (≤19 years), younger age of sexual debut (≤15 years), having discussed sexual health/contraception with a doctor, regular binge drinking, and recent illicit drug use. Conclusion. Substance use correlated strongly with risky sexual behaviour. Further research should explore young people’s knowledge of alcohol/drug-related impairment and associated risk-taking behaviours, and campaigns should encourage appropriate STI testing among music festival attendees. Rebecca Jenkinson, Anna Bowring, Paul Dietze, Margaret Hellard, and Megan S. C. Lim Copyright © 2014 Rebecca Jenkinson et al. All rights reserved. Sexual Transmission of HCV in Heterologous Monogamous Spouses Mon, 24 Nov 2014 06:39:04 +0000 We screened for evidence of HCV infection in healthy heterologous monogamous spouses of chronic HCV patients and studied the relation with various risk factors. A cross-sectional study of fifty healthy monogamous heterosexual spouses of HCV-positive index cases was carried out. All participants were HBV and HIV negative. The association with various risk factors was studied. Five spouses (10%) showed evidence of HCV infection. Two partners were positive for HCV antibody alone (4%) and 3 for antibody and HCV PCR (6%). No association was found between HCV infection and various sociodemographic parameters with the exception of older age categories. Intraspousal transmission of HCV may be an important source of spread of HCV infection. The reservoir of HCV-infected individuals in Egypt is sizable, and sexual transmission of HCV may contribute to the total burden of infection in Egypt. Mona M. Rafik, Yehia El Shazly, Amal A. Abbas, Walid Abd Elhady, Dina Ragab, and Dina AlShennawy Copyright © 2014 Mona M. Rafik et al. All rights reserved. Prevalence of Trichomoniasis, Vaginal Candidiasis, Genital Herpes, Chlamydiasis, and Actinomycosis among Urban and Rural Women of Haryana, India Wed, 29 Oct 2014 00:00:00 +0000 Despite being curable reproductive tract infections (RTIs) including sexually transmitted infections continue to be a major health problem in developing countries. The present study was undertaken to know the prevalence of trichomoniasis, vaginal candidiasis, genital herpes, chlamydiasis, and actinomycosis in rural and urban women of Haryana by using wet mount, PAP smear, and fluorescent microscopic examination. Patients suspected of suffering from bacterial vaginosis were given treatment and were not included in the study. RTIs were seen in 16.6% of urban and 28.7% of rural women. The highest prevalence seen was that of trichomoniasis in both rural (24.2%) and urban (15.7%) women, followed by candidiasis (4.2% in rural and 0.6% in urban women), genital herpes (0.3% in rural and 0.2% in urban women), and chlamydiasis (0.02% in rural and 0.05% in urban women). Pelvic actinomycosis was seen in 1.4% of rural and 0.06% of urban women using intrauterine contraceptive devices. Mixed infection of Trichomonas vaginalis with Candida spp. was seen in 6.3% of rural women only. It is desirable to have a baseline profile of the prevalence of various agents causing RTIs in a particular geographic area and population which will help in better syndromic management of the patients. Brij Bala Arora, Megha Maheshwari, Naiya Devgan, and D. R. Arora Copyright © 2014 Brij Bala Arora et al. All rights reserved. Prevalence and Predictors of Self-Reported Consistent Condom Usage among Male Clients of Female Sex Workers in Tamil Nadu, India Sun, 01 Jun 2014 06:54:31 +0000 Clients of female sex workers (FSWs) possess a high potential of transmitting HIV and other sexually transmitted infections from high risk FSWs to the general population. Promotion of safer sex practices among the clients is essential to limit the spread of HIV/AIDS epidemic. The aim of this study is to estimate the prevalence of consistent condom use (CCU) among clients of FSWs and to assess the factors associated with CCU in Tamil Nadu. 146 male respondents were recruited from the hotspots who reportedly had sex with FSWs in exchange for cash at least once in the past one month. Data were analyzed using bivariate and multivariate methods. Overall, 48.6 and 0.8 percent clients consistently used condoms in the past 12 months with FSWs and regular partners, respectively. Logistic regression showed that factors such as education, peers’ use of condoms, and alcohol consumption significantly influenced clients’ CCU with FSWs. Strategies for safe sex-behaviour are needed among clients of FSWs in order to limit the spread of HIV/AIDS epidemic in the general population. The role of peer-educators in experience sharing and awareness generation must also be emphasized. Saumya Rastogi, Bimal Charles, and Asirvatham Edwin Sam Copyright © 2014 Saumya Rastogi et al. All rights reserved. Care Seeking Behaviour and Barriers to Accessing Services for Sexual Health Problems among Women in Rural Areas of Tamilnadu State in India Thu, 20 Mar 2014 17:41:55 +0000 Background. Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) may be either asymptomatic or symptomatic. Regardless of the presence or absence of symptoms all STIs can lead to major complications if left untreated. Objective. To assess the care seeking behaviour and barriers to accessing services for sexual health problems among young married women in rural areas of Thiruvarur district of Tamil Nadu state in India. Methods. A community based cross-sectional study was conducted in 28 villages selected using multistage sampling technique for selecting 605 women in the age group of 15–24 years during July 2010–April 2011. Results. The prevalence rate of reproductive tract infections (RTIs) and STIs was observed to be 14.5% and 8.8%, respectively, among the study population. Itching/irritation over vulva, thick white discharge, discharge with unpleasant odor, and frequent and uncomfortable urination were most commonly experienced symptoms of sexual health problems. Around three-fourth of the women received treatment for sexual health problems. Perception of symptoms as normal, feeling shy, lack of female health workers, distance to health facility, and lack of availability of treatment were identified as major barriers for not seeking treatment for RTIs/STIs. Conclusion. Family tradition and poor socioeconomic conditions of the family appear to be the main reasons for not utilizing the health facility for sexual health problems. Integrated approach is strongly suggested for creating awareness to control the spread of sexual health problems among young people. Rejoice Puthuchira Ravi and Ravishankar Athimulam Kulasekaran Copyright © 2014 Rejoice Puthuchira Ravi and Ravishankar Athimulam Kulasekaran. All rights reserved. Erratum to “Increasing Antenatal Care and HIV Testing among Rural Pregnant Women with Conditional Cash Transfers to Self-Help Groups: An Evaluation Study in Rural Mysore, India” Sun, 16 Mar 2014 07:06:39 +0000 Purnima Madhivanan, Bhavana Niranjankumar, Reshma Shaheen, Poornima Jaykrishna, Kavitha Ravi, Savitha Gowda, Vijaya Srinivas, Anjali Arun, and Karl Krupp Copyright © 2014 Purnima Madhivanan et al. All rights reserved. Trichomonas vaginalis Incidence Associated with Hormonal Contraceptive Use and HIV Infection among Women in Rakai, Uganda Tue, 04 Mar 2014 12:29:12 +0000 Background. Data on the incidence of Trichomonas vaginalis and use of hormonal contraception (HC) are limited. Methods. 2,374 sexually active women aged 15–49 years from cohort surveys in Rakai, Uganda, were included. Incidence of T. vaginalis was estimated per 100 person years (py) and association between HC (DMPA, Norplant, and oral contraceptives) and T. vaginalis infection was assessed by incidence rate ratios (IRR), using Poisson regression models. Results. At baseline, 34.9% had used HC in the last 12 months, 12.8% HIV+, 39.7% with high BV-scores (7–10), and 3.1% syphilis positive. The 12-month incidence of T. vaginalis was 2.4/100 py; CI (1.90, 3.25). When stratified by type of HC used, compared to women who did not use HC or condoms, incidence of T. vaginalis was significantly higher among users of Norplant (adj.IRR = 3.01, CI: 1.07–8.49) and significantly lower among DMPA users (adj.IRR = 0.55, CI: 0.30, 0.98) and women who discontinued HC use at follow-up (adj.IRR = 0.30, CI: 0.09, 0.99). HIV infection was associated with an increase in incidence of T. vaginalis (adj.IRR = 2.34, CI: 1.44, 3.78). Conclusions. Use of Norplant and being HIV+ significantly increased the risk of T. vaginalis, while use of DMPA and discontinuation of overall HC use were associated with a decreased incidence of T. vaginalis. Heena Brahmbhatt, Richard Musoke, Frederick Makumbi, Godfrey Kigozi, David Serwadda, Maria Wawer, and Ronald Gray Copyright © 2014 Heena Brahmbhatt et al. All rights reserved. Married Men Perceptions and Barriers to Participation in the Prevention of Mother-to-Child HIV Transmission Care in Osogbo, Nigeria Wed, 19 Feb 2014 09:14:29 +0000 Men’s role in HIV prevention is pivotal to changing the course of the epidemic. Men’s barriers toward participation in Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission (PMTCT) have not been adequately documented. This study is therefore designed to determine men’s level of awareness and barriers to their participation in PMTCT programmes in Osogbo, Nigeria. This study was a descriptive qualitative one that utilized Focus Group Discussion (FGD). One-hundred and sixty married men were selected by convenience sampling and interviewed. Data collected were analysed using content analysis technique. Demographic data were analysed using SPSS 15.0 software to generate frequency tables. Participants mean age was 31.9 ± 5.9 years. Many of the participants had heard about PMTCT and the majority agreed that it is good to accompany their wife to Antenatal Care (ANC) but only few had ever done so. Societal norms and cultural barriers were the leading identified barriers for male involvement in PMTCT programmes. The majority of the participant perceived it was a good idea to accompany their wife to antenatal care but putting this into practice was a problem due to societal norms and cultural barriers. Community sensitization programmes such as health education aimed at breaking cultural barriers should be instituted by government and nongovernmental agencies. Ademola L. Adelekan, Elizabeth R. Edoni, and Oladipupo S. Olaleye Copyright © 2014 Ademola L. Adelekan et al. All rights reserved. Women and Children First: The Impact of Sexually Transmitted Infections on Maternal and Child Health Tue, 18 Feb 2014 08:22:19 +0000 Consuelo Beck Sagué, Carolyn Black, Stephen A. Morse, and George Schmid Copyright © 2014 Consuelo Beck Sagué et al. All rights reserved. Assessment of Sexual and Reproductive Health Status of Street Children in Addis Ababa Thu, 26 Dec 2013 09:07:56 +0000 Street children worldwide do not have the information, skills, health services, and support they need to go through sexual development during adolescence. This study is undertaken to systematically investigate the fit between street children’s sexual and reproductive health needs and the existing services. A cross-sectional study was conducted among 422 street children and four service providers. About 72.5% of the respondents were sexually active during data collection and 84.3% of males and 85.7% of females tended to have multiple sexual partners. More than two-thirds (67.3%) of the participants had used at least one type of substance. History of substance use (OR = 2.5; 95% CI = 1.42–4.56) and being on the street for the first one to three years (OR = 5.9; 95% CI = 1.41–7.22) increased the likelihood of having sexual activity. More than half (64.9%) of the street children did not attend any kind of sexual or reproductive health education programs. Lack of information on available services (26.5%) was the biggest barrier for utilization of local sexual and reproductive health services. From the individual interview with coordinator, the financial and networking problems were hindering the service delivery for street children. In conclusion, street children who are special high risk group have not been targeted and hence continue to remain vulnerable and lacking in sexual and reproductive health services and sexual health services are poorly advertised and delivered to them. Demelash Habtamu and Addisie Adamu Copyright © 2013 Demelash Habtamu and Addisie Adamu. All rights reserved. Rapid-Testing Technology and Systems Improvement for the Elimination of Congenital Syphilis in Haiti: Overcoming the “Technology to Systems Gap” Sun, 22 Dec 2013 10:12:56 +0000 Background. Despite the availability of rapid diagnostic tests and inexpensive treatment for pregnant women, maternal-child syphilis transmission remains a leading cause of perinatal morbidity and mortality in developing countries. In Haiti, more than 3000 babies are born with congenital syphilis annually. Methods and Findings. From 2007 to 2011, we used a sequential time series, multi-intervention study design in fourteen clinics throughout Haiti to improve syphilis testing and treatment in pregnancy. The two primary interventions were the introduction of a rapid point-of-care syphilis test and systems strengthening based on quality improvement (QI) methods. Syphilis testing increased from 91.5% prediagnostic test to 95.9% after () and further increased to 96.8% () after the QI intervention. Despite high rates of testing across all time periods, syphilis treatment lagged behind and only increased from 70.3% to 74.7% after the introduction of rapid tests (), but it improved significantly from 70.2% to 84.3% () after the systems strengthening QI intervention. Conclusion. Both point-of-care diagnostic testing and health systems-based quality improvement interventions can improve the delivery of specific evidence-based healthcare interventions to prevent congenital syphilis at scale in Haiti. Improved treatment rates for syphilis were seen only after the use of systems-based quality improvement approaches. Linda Severe, Daphne Benoit, Xi K. Zhou, Jean W. Pape, Rosanna W. Peeling, Daniel W. Fitzgerald, and Kedar S. Mate Copyright © 2013 Linda Severe et al. All rights reserved. The Epidemiology of Herpes Simplex Virus Type-2 Infection among Pregnant Women in Rural Mysore Taluk, India Thu, 14 Nov 2013 09:57:53 +0000 Objectives. To assess the prevalence and determinants of herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) infections among pregnant women attending mobile antenatal health clinic in rural villages in Mysore Taluk, India. Methods. Between January and September 2009, 487 women from 52 villages participated in this study. Each participant consented to provide a blood sample for HSV-2 and HIV testing and underwent an interviewer-administered questionnaire. Results. HSV-2 prevalence was 6.7% (95% confidence interval (CI) 4.4–9.0), and one woman tested positive for HIV. The median age of women was 20 years and 99% of women reported having a single lifetime sex partner. Women whose sex partner traveled away from home had 2.68 (CI: 1.13–6.34) times the odds of being HSV-2 seropositive compared to women whose sex partner did not travel. Having experienced genital lesions was also associated with HSV-2 infection ( value = 0.08). Conclusion. The 6.7% HSV-2 prevalence was similar to results obtained in studies among pregnant women in other parts of India. It appeared that most women in this study contracted HSV-2 from their spouses and few regularly used condoms. This finding highlights the need for public health policies to increase awareness and education about prevention methods among women and men living in rural India. Aaron F. Bochner, Purnima Madhivanan, Bhavana Niranjankumar, Kavitha Ravi, Anjali Arun, Karl Krupp, and Jeffrey D. Klausner Copyright © 2013 Aaron F. Bochner et al. All rights reserved. The Impact of Integration of Rapid Syphilis Testing during Routine Antenatal Services in Rural Kenya Tue, 05 Nov 2013 10:56:59 +0000 We evaluated the integration of rapid syphilis tests (RSTs) and penicillin treatment kits into routine antenatal clinic (ANC) services in two rural districts in Nyanza Province, Kenya. In February 2011, nurses from 25 clinics were trained in using RSTs and documenting test results and treatment. During March 2011–February 2012, free RSTs and treatment kits were provided to clinics for use during ANC visits. We analyzed ANC registry data from eight clinics during the 12-month periods before and during RST program implementation and compared syphilis testing, diagnosis, and treatment during the two periods. Syphilis testing at first ANC visit increased from 18% (279 of 1,586 attendees) before the intervention to 70% (1,123 of 1,614 attendees) during the intervention (); 35 women (3%) tested positive during the intervention period compared with 1 (<1%) before (). Syphilis treatment was not recorded according to training recommendations; seven clinics identified 28 RST-positive women and recorded 34 treatment kits as used. Individual-level data from three high-volume clinics supported that the intervention did not negatively affect HIV test uptake. Integrating RSTs into rural ANC services increased syphilis testing and detection. Record keeping on treatment of syphilis in RST-positive women remains challenging. Eleanor Fleming, Jared Oremo, Katherine O'Connor, Aloyce Odhiambo, Tun Ye, Simon Oswago, Clement Zeh, Robert Quick, and Mary L. Kamb Copyright © 2013 Eleanor Fleming et al. All rights reserved. Sexually Transmitted Infections in Women Participating in a Biomedical Intervention Trial in Durban: Prevalence, Coinfections, and Risk Factors Sun, 03 Nov 2013 14:06:20 +0000 Background. Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) continue to be a significant public health problem especially among women of reproductive age in Africa. Methods. A total of 2236 women that had enrolled in the MDP301 vaginal microbicide trial were tested for the presence of Chlamydia trachomatis (CT), Neisseria gonorrhea (NG), Treponema pallidum, and Trichomonas vaginalis (TV). Results. CT was identified as the most prevalent STI (11%) followed by TV (10%), NG, and Syphilis (3%). The highest prevalence of coinfection was reported between T. pallidum and TV (19.67%, ), followed by CT and TV (13.52%, ). Risk factors that were significantly associated with STI acquisition were women of 23 years of age or younger (HR: 1.50, 95% CI 1.17, 1.93), baseline STI with CT (HR: 1.77, 95% CI 1.32, 2.35), TV (HR: 1.58, 95% CI, 1.20, 2.10), and T. pallidum (HR: 5.13, 95% CI 3.65, 7.22), and a low education level (HR: 1.30, 95% CI 1.02, 1.66). Conclusion. Young women with lower education and a history of STIs are at high risk of multiple STIs. Prevention programs should consider target approach to STI prevention among young women. This trial is registered with ISRCTN64716212. Nathlee Samantha Abbai, Handan Wand, and Gita Ramjee Copyright © 2013 Nathlee Samantha Abbai et al. All rights reserved. Remembering the Children: Implementation and Success of a Robust Method for Identifying and Testing Children of HIV Patients Wed, 30 Oct 2013 11:20:21 +0000 Background. Children of HIV patients are a historically neglected demographic by HIV services. It has been recommended by CHIVA that HIV services have a robust method of detecting and testing untested children. We note that no such method is either in widespread use or in the literature. Method. In December 2011, a one-page proforma to identify HIV untested children and a clear multidisciplinary pathway to test them were implemented. Twelve months later the uptake of the proforma and pathway, the numbers of patients and children identified for testing, and their outcomes were audited. Results. The proforma was completed in 192/203 (94.6%) eligible patients. Twenty-five (21.5%) of 118 identified offspring had not been tested. Ten (8.5%) of these were <18 years old. All were reported to be clinically well. Ten children were referred for testing, seven were tested immediately, and three were tested within 18 months of identification. All children were tested HIV negative. Discussion. We have identified a method of identification that is easy and robust and provides a user-friendly safety net to empower healthcare providers to identify and test children at risk. We recommend the implementation of such strategies nationwide to prevent death due to undiagnosed HIV in children. Christopher Darlow, Peter Tovey, Fiona Wallis, Clare Knowles, Ian Fairley, Charles Lacey, and Fabiola Martin Copyright © 2013 Christopher Darlow et al. All rights reserved. Measurement of Stigma in Men Who Have Sex with Men in Hanoi, Vietnam: Assessment of a Homosexuality-Related Stigma Scale Wed, 30 Oct 2013 08:40:46 +0000 Objective. To develop and assess a homosexuality-related stigma scale among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Hanoi, Vietnam. Methods. We conducted a cross-sectional study using respondent-driven sampling in Hanoi, Vietnam, in 2011. We used a cross-validation approach. Factor analysis was performed, and interitem correlation matrices were constructed to identify the latent factor structures, examine the goodness of fit, and assess convergent and discriminant validity of the determined scales. Internal consistency checks were performed in split samples and whole sample, and separately for each determined factor. Results. The findings were consistent in split samples. Three homosexuality-related stigma factors were identified: enacted homosexual stigma, perceived homosexual stigma, and internalized homosexual stigma. The fit indices of the confirmatory factor analysis in both split samples supported the hypothesized three-factor structures (in subsamples A and B: /degrees of freedom ratio = 1.77 and 1.59, nonnormed fit index = 0.92 and 0.94, comparative fit index = 0.93 and 0.95, and the root mean square of approximation = 0.06 and 0.05, resp.). The interitem correlation supported the convergent and discriminant validity of the scales. The reliability of the three scales indicated good consistency (Cronbach’s alpha: 0.79–0.84) across split samples and for the whole data. Conclusion. Our scales have good psychometric properties for measuring homosexuality-related stigma. These comprehensive and practical tools are crucial not only to assess stigma against MSM and its consequence, but also to guide the development of interventions targeting MSM, as well as to evaluate the efficacy of existing stigma reduction efforts in Vietnam and other countries with similar settings. Huy Ha, Michael W. Ross, Jan M. H. Risser, and Huong T. M. Nguyen Copyright © 2013 Huy Ha et al. All rights reserved. Increasing Antenatal Care and HIV Testing among Rural Pregnant Women with Conditional Cash Transfers to Self-Help Groups: An Evaluation Study in Rural Mysore, India Sun, 01 Sep 2013 14:17:56 +0000 Background. We describe a one-year evaluation study comparing SCIL intervention of mobile provision of integrated ANC/ HIV testing with an enhanced (SCIL+) intervention of community mobilization strategy providing conditional cash transfers (CCT) to women’s SHG for identifying and accompanying pregnant women to mobile clinics. Methods. Twenty pairs of villages matched on population, socioeconomic status, access to medical facilities, and distance from Mysore city were divided between SCIL and SCIL+ interventions. The primary study outcome was the proportion of total pregnancies in these villages who received ANC and HIV testing. Results. Between April 2011 and March 2012, 552 pregnant women participated in SCIL or SCIL+ interventions. Among women who were pregnant at the time of intervention delivery, 181 of 418 (43.3%) women pregnant at the time of intervention delivery received ANC in the SCIL arm, while 371 of 512 (72.5%) received ANC in the SCIL+ arm (); 175 (97%) in the SCIL and 366 (98.6%) in the SCIL+ arm consented to HIV testing (). HIV prevalence of 0.6% was detected among SCIL clinic, and 0.9% among attending SCIL+ clinic attendees. Conclusion. Provision of CCT to women’s microeconomic SHG appears to significantly increase uptake of ANC/HIV testing services in rural Mysore villages. Purnima Madhivanan, Bhavana NiranjanKumar, Reshma Shaheen, Poornima Jaykrishna, Kavitha Ravi, Savitha Gowda, Vijaya Srinivas, Anjali Arun, and Karl Krupp Copyright © 2013 Purnima Madhivanan et al. All rights reserved. Investigating Recent Testing among MSM: Results from Community-Based HIV Rapid Testing Attendees in France Sun, 28 Jul 2013 08:18:38 +0000 Background. We aimed to identify factors associated with recent HIV testing in MSM who attended two experimental community-based and nonmedicalized voluntary counselling and testing programmes (CB-VCT) targeting MSM in France. Methods. This analysis was based on data collected in 2009–2011 through a self-administered pretesting questionnaire. An index measuring the level of participants’ sexual orientation disclosure was built: the higher the index, the greater the disclosure. Factors associated with recent HIV testing (last test ≤ 1 year) were identified using a multivariate logistic regression model adjusted for the CB-VCT programme of enrolment. Results. 716 MSM provided data on testing history. Overall, 49% were recently tested for HIV and 51% were not. Recently tested MSM had a higher homosexuality disclosure index (adjusted OR [95% confidence interval]: aOR = 1.2 [1.1–1.4]), reported more inconsistent condom use during anal sex with men (aOR = 1.6 [1.2–2.1]), and were less likely to have sex under the influence of club drugs (aOR = 0.6 [0.4–1.0]). Conclusion. New testing strategies should focus on those who live their homosexuality relatively secretly and those who use club drugs before sex. Governments should develop policies which encourage improved social acceptance of homosexuality as concealment of sexual orientation represents a major barrier to testing. Nicolas Lorente, Karen Champenois, Jérôme Blanche, Marie Préau, Marie Suzan-Monti, Marion Mora, Lionel Fugon, Maria Patrizia Carrieri, Luis Sagaon-Teyssier, Jean-Marie Le Gall, Bruno Spire, and Yazdan Yazdanpanah Copyright © 2013 Nicolas Lorente et al. All rights reserved. High-Risk Sexual Behavior Is Associated with Postexposure Prophylaxis Nonadherence among Men Who Have Sex with Men Enrolled in a Combination Prevention Intervention Wed, 10 Jul 2013 10:13:38 +0000 Methamphetamine use among men who have sex with men (MSM) is associated with increased HIV prevalence, due to increased engagement in high-risk sexual behavior. Fifty-three HIV-negative, methamphetamine-using MSM were enrolled in a biobehavioral combination prevention intervention in Los Angeles, CA, to assess the feasibility of administering postexposure prophylaxis (PEP) in combination with contingency management (CM) to prevent HIV seroconversion. The study combined a CM behavioral intervention targeting reductions in methamphetamine use with a PEP biomedical intervention for HIV prevention. Those who reported recent exposure to HIV were initiated on tenofovir/emtricitabine- (Truvada-) based PEP (). This secondary analysis sought to determine whether sexual risk taking was associated with PEP adherence. Regression analyses controlling for participant sociodemographics demonstrated that, at baseline, increased number of lifetime sexually transmitted diseases (STDs; Coef. = −0.07; 95% CI= (−0.12) – (−0.01)) and recent episodes of unprotected anal intercourse (UAI; Coef. = −0.01; 95% CI= (−.01) – (−0.002)) were associated with reductions in medication adherence. Given these associations between baseline sexual risk and PEP adherence, providers working with high-risk MSM may look to target reductions in sexual risk taking; this will reduce direct risk of HIV infection and may work to optimize medication adherence in the case of PEP initiation. Jesse B. Fletcher, Joshua A. Rusow, Hung Le, Raphael J. Landovitz, and Cathy J. Reback Copyright © 2013 Jesse B. Fletcher et al. All rights reserved. Access to Basic HIV-Related Services and PrEP Acceptability among Men Who Have sex with Men Worldwide: Barriers, Facilitators, and Implications for Combination Prevention Mon, 08 Jul 2013 11:33:58 +0000 Introduction. Men who have sex with men (MSM) are disproportionately impacted by HIV globally. Easily accessible combination HIV prevention strategies, tailored to the needs of MSM, are needed to effectively address the AIDS pandemic. Methods and Materials. We conducted a cross-sectional study among MSM () from 145 countries from April to August 2012. Using multivariable random effects models, we examined factors associated with acceptability of preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and access to condoms, lubricants, HIV testing, and HIV treatment. Results. Condoms and lubricants were accessible to 35% and 22% of all respondents, respectively. HIV testing was accessible to 35% of HIV-negative respondents. Forty-three percent of all HIV-positive respondents reported that antiretroviral therapy was easily accessible. Homophobia, outness, and service provider stigma were significantly associated with reduced access to services. Conversely, community engagement, connection to gay community, and comfort with service providers were associated with increased access. PrEP acceptability was associated with lower PrEP-related stigma, less knowledge about PrEP, less outness, higher service provider stigma, and having experienced violence for being MSM. Conclusions. Ensuring HIV service access among MSM will be critical in maximizing the potential effectiveness of combination approaches, especially given the interdependence of both basic and newer interventions like PrEP. Barriers and facilitators of HIV service access for MSM should be better understood and addressed. George Ayala, Keletso Makofane, Glenn-Milo Santos, Jack Beck, Tri D. Do, Pato Hebert, Patrick A. Wilson, Thomas Pyun, and Sonya Arreola Copyright © 2013 George Ayala et al. All rights reserved. Pharyngeal Gonorrhoea in Women: An Important Reservoir for Increasing Neisseria gonorrhoea Prevalence in Urban Australian Heterosexuals? Wed, 26 Jun 2013 11:48:05 +0000 We aim to characterize sexual behavioral aspects of heterosexual Neisseria gonorrhoea (NG) acquisition in two Sexually Transmitted Diseases clinics in Sydney, Australia, in 2008–2012. Of 167 NG cases, 102 were heterosexually acquired with a trend of increasing NG prevalence in heterosexuals from 1.1% (95% CI 0.6–2.1) in 2008 to 3.0% (95% CI 2.0–4.0) in 2012 (). Of heterosexual male cases, unprotected fellatio was the likely sexual activity for NG acquisition in 21/69 (30.4%) and commercial sex work (CSW) contact the likely source in 28/69 (40.6%). NG prevalence overall in CSW (2.2%) was not significantly higher than in non-CSW (1.2%) (), but in 2012 there was a significant increase in NG prevalence in CSW (8.6%) compared to non-CSW (1.6%) (). Pharyngeal NG was found in 9/33 (27.3%) female cases. Decreased susceptibility to ceftriaxone (MIC ≥ 0.03 mg/L) occurred in 2.5% NG isolates, none heterosexually acquired. All were azithromycin susceptible. A significant trend of increasing prevalence of heterosexual gonorrhoea in an urban Australian STD clinic setting is reported. We advocate maintenance of NG screening in women, including pharyngeal screening in all women with partner change who report fellatio, as pharyngeal NG may be an important reservoir for heterosexual transmission. Outreach to CSW should be enhanced. M. Josephine Lusk, Ruby N. N. Uddin, Monica M. Lahra, Frances L. Garden, Ratan L. Kundu, and Pam Konecny Copyright © 2013 M. Josephine Lusk et al. All rights reserved. The Role of Sexually Transmitted Infections in HIV-1 Progression: A Comprehensive Review of the Literature Mon, 24 Jun 2013 09:36:35 +0000 Due to shared routes of infection, HIV-infected persons are frequently coinfected with other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Studies have demonstrated the bidirectional relationships between HIV and several STIs, including herpes simplex virus-2 (HSV-2), hepatitis B and C viruses, human papilloma virus, syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and trichomonas. HIV-1 may affect the clinical presentation, treatment outcome, and progression of STIs, such as syphilis, HSV-2, and hepatitis B and C viruses. Likewise, the presence of an STI may increase both genital and plasma HIV-1 RNA levels, enhancing the transmissibility of HIV-1, with important public health implications. Regarding the effect of STIs on HIV-1 progression, the most studied interrelationship has been with HIV-1/HSV-2 coinfection, with recent studies showing that antiherpetic medications slow the time to CD4 <200 cells/µL and antiretroviral therapy among coinfected patients. The impact of other chronic STIs (hepatitis B and C) on HIV-1 progression requires further study, but some studies have shown increased mortality rates. Treatable, nonchronic STIs (i.e., syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and trichomonas) typically have no or transient impacts on plasma HIV RNA levels that resolve with antimicrobial therapy; no long-term effects on outcomes have been shown. Future studies are advocated to continue investigating the complex interplay between HIV-1 and other STIs. Helen M. Chun, Robert J. Carpenter, Grace E. Macalino, and Nancy F. Crum-Cianflone Copyright © 2013 Helen M. Chun et al. All rights reserved. Dual Protection and Dual Methods in Women Living with HIV: The Brazilian Context Thu, 20 Jun 2013 14:39:12 +0000 The cooccurrence of HIV and unintended pregnancy has prompted a body of work on dual protection, the simultaneous protection against HIV and unintended pregnancy. This study examines dual protection and dual methods as a risk-reduction strategy for women living with HIV. Data are from a cross-sectional sample of HIV-positive women attended in Specialized STI/AIDS Public Health Service Clinics in 13 municipalities from all five regions of Brazil 2003-2004 (). Descriptive techniques and logistic regression were used to examine dual protection among women living with HIV. We expand the definition of dual protection to include consistent condom use and reversible/irreversible contraceptive methods, we test the dual methods hypothesis that women who use dual methods will use condoms less consistently than women who use only condoms, and we identify predictors of dual protection. Dual protection is common in our sample. Women who use dual methods have lower odds of consistent condom use than women who only use condoms. Among dual method users, we find that women who use an irreversible method use condoms more consistently than women who use a reversible method. Women on ART and with an HIV-serodiscordant partner have greater odds of consistent condom use than their counterparts. Kiyomi Tsuyuki, Regina María Barbosa, and Adriana de Araujo Pinho Copyright © 2013 Kiyomi Tsuyuki et al. All rights reserved. Factors Associated with Use of Latex Condom-Compatible Lubricants by Men Who Have Sex with Men in India: Implications for HIV Prevention Thu, 13 Jun 2013 17:56:26 +0000 We examined the prevalence and type of rectal lubricants use and factors associated with exclusive use of latex-condom compatible lubricants (water-based lubricants) among men who have sex with men (MSM) using data from a large-scale cross-sectional survey conducted in 2009/10 in three Indian states. Using time-location cluster sampling, 3880 MSM were recruited from cruising sites. We used multiple logistic regression to assess the association between type of lubricants used and sociodemographic and programmatic indicators. Among those who reported using lubricants (64%) more than half (53%) exclusively used water-based lubricants, less than one-tenth used exclusively oil-based lubricants, and nearly 40% used both water-based and oil-based lubricants. Factors associated with exclusive use of water-based lubricants were exposure to HIV prevention interventions (AOR: 6.18, 95% CI 4.82 to 7.92) and kothi-identified MSM—feminine/anal-receptive (AOR: 2.56, 95% CI 2.12 to 3.10). Targeted HIV interventions among MSM need to promote and distribute latex condom-compatible lubricants for use during anal sex—irrespective of their presumed or stated sexual role in anal sex, and educate them not to use oil-based lubricants with condoms. Shreena Ramanathan, Venkatesan Chakrapani, Lakshmi Ramakrishnan, Prabuddhagopal Goswami, Diwakar Yadav, Bitra George, Shrabanti Sen, Harikumar Rachakulla, Thilakavathi Subramanian, and Ramesh S. Paranjape Copyright © 2013 Shreena Ramanathan et al. All rights reserved. Epidemiology of Sexually Transmitted Infections among Human Immunodeficiency Virus Positive United States Military Personnel Sun, 21 Apr 2013 08:08:21 +0000 Background. Minimal data exist that describe the epidemiology of sexually transmitted infections (STI) in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) positive populations across the pre- and post-diagnosis periods for HIV. Purpose. The purpose of this study was to identify and describe the epidemiology of gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis, herpes simplex virus, and human papillomavirus in an HIV-positive population. Methods. All 1,961 HIV seropositive United States active duty military personnel from 2000–2010 were identified. STI diagnoses relative to HIV diagnosis from 1995, which was the earliest electronic medical record available, to 2010 were examined. Results. The incidence diagnosis rates of STI generally increased during the period leading up to eventual HIV diagnosis. The rates of STI during the post-HIV diagnosis period fluctuated, but remained elevated compared to pre-HIV diagnosis period. Approximately 45%–69% with an STI in the HIV seropositive military population were diagnosed with their first STI greater than one year after their HIV diagnosis. Of those who were diagnosed with an STI in the post-HIV diagnosis period, 70.6% had one STI diagnosis, 23.5% had two STI diagnoses, and 5.8% had three or more STI diagnoses. Conclusions. Despite aggressive counseling, high-risk sexual behavior continues to occur in the HIV-positive military population. Jeff S. Tzeng, Leslie L. Clark, Eric C. Garges, and Jean Lin Otto Copyright © 2013 Jeff S. Tzeng et al. All rights reserved. Adverse Psychosexual Impact Related to the Treatment of Genital Warts and Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia Wed, 17 Apr 2013 11:54:18 +0000 Objective. To compare the psychosexual impact related to the treatment of genital warts and cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) in women. Methods. 75 patients presenting with HPV-induced genital lesions, belonging to one of two patient groups, were included in the study: 29 individuals with genital warts (GWs) and 46 individuals with CIN grades 2 or 3 (CIN 2/3). Initially, medical charts of each woman were examined for extraction of data on the type of HPV-induced infection and treatment administered. Subjects were interviewed to collect sociodemographic data as well as personal, gynecologic, obstetric, and sexual history. After this initial anamnesis, the Sexual Quotient-Female Version (SQ-F) questionnaire was applied to assess sexual function. After application of the questionnaire, patients answered specific questions produced by the researchers, aimed at assessing the impact of the disease and its treatment on their sexual lives. Results. It is noteworthy that patients with CIN 2/3 had statistically similar classification of sexual quotient to patients with GWs (). However, patients with GWs more frequently gave positive answers to the specific questions compared to patients with CIN 2/3. Conclusion. Based on these findings, it is clear that GWs have a greater impact on sexual behavior compared to CIN 2/3. Adriana Bittencourt Campaner, Nelson Vespa Junior, Paulo César Giraldo, and Mauro Romero Leal Passos Copyright © 2013 Adriana Bittencourt Campaner et al. All rights reserved. Serosorting and HIV/STI Infection among HIV-Negative MSM and Transgender People: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis to Inform WHO Guidelines Sun, 14 Apr 2013 09:38:59 +0000 We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to assess the association between serosorting and HIV infection, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and quality of life among men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender people. Two reviewers independently screened abstracts and abstracted data. Meta-analyses were conducted using random effects models. Of 310 citations reviewed, 4 observational studies, all with MSM, met inclusion criteria. Compared to consistent condom use, serosorting was associated with increased risk of HIV (3 studies, odds ratio (OR): 1.80, 95% confidence interval (CI):1.21–2.70) and bacterial STIs (1 study, OR: 1.62, 95% CI: 1.44–1.83). Compared to no condom use, serosorting was associated with reduced risk of HIV (3 studies, OR: 0.46, 95% CI: 0.25–0.83) and bacterial STIs (1 study, OR: 0.81, 95% CI: 0.73–0.91). Among HIV-negative MSM, condom use appears to be more protective against HIV and STIs than serosorting and should be encouraged. However, serosorting may be better than no condom use as a harm reduction strategy. Caitlin E. Kennedy, Laura J. Bernard, Kathryn E. Muessig, Kelika A. Konda, Elie A. Akl, Ying-Ru Lo, Antonio Gerbase, and Kevin R. O’Reilly Copyright © 2013 Caitlin E. Kennedy et al. All rights reserved. Community-Based Surveys for Determining the Prevalence of HIV, Chlamydia, and Gonorrhoea in Men Having Sex with Men in Hong Kong Tue, 09 Apr 2013 10:06:11 +0000 Background. Community sampling of men having sex with men (MSM) for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and sexually transmitted infections prevalence studies poses challenges in view of problems in logistics and the hidden nature of MSM population. Methods. MSM in Hong Kong were recruited through social venues and the Internet. All participants were invited to complete a behavioural questionnaire and submit a urine specimen for HIV, Chlamydia, and gonorrhoea testing. Results. Totally, 994 MSM were recruited. No differences between venue and online-recruited respondents were identified regarding their demographics and infection status. The prevalence of HIV, Chlamydia, and gonorrhoea was 3.6% (95% CI: 2.6–5.0%), 4.7% (95% CI: 3.6–6.2%), and 0.2% (95% CI: 0.1–0.7%), respectively. Of all HIV cases, only 8.3% were aware of the infection; reflecting newly infected MSM were probably overrepresented. Some 58.3% had had HIV test within the past year, and 11.1% had CT/NG coinfection. HIV infection was associated with group sex [aOR: 2.67 (1.03–6.92)], receiving money for anal sex [aOR: 4.63 (1.12–19.18)], and unprotected anal sex with nonregular partners [aOR: 3.047 (1.16–8.01)]. Conclusion. Difference between venue- and online-recruited MSM was observed. A combination of sampling methods is complementary for epidemiology purpose. Overall, risk behaviours practised by undiagnosed HIV-positive MSM remains a cause for concern. H. T. H. Wong, K. H. Wong, S. S. Lee, R. W. M. Leung, and K. C. K. Lee Copyright © 2013 H. T. H. Wong et al. All rights reserved. Genital Ulcer Disease: How Worrisome Is It Today? A Status Report from New Delhi, India Wed, 03 Apr 2013 19:28:02 +0000 Background and Objectives. Genital ulcer diseases represent a diagnostic dilemma, especially in India, where few STI clinics have access to reliable laboratory facility. The changing STI trends require that a correct diagnosis be made in order to institute appropriate treatment and formulate control policies. The objective of this study was to determine recent trends in aetiology of genital ulcers, by using accurate diagnostic tools. Methods. Specimens from 90 ulcer patients were processed for dark field microscopy, stained smears, culture for H. ducreyi, and real-time PCR. Blood samples were collected for serological tests. Results. Prevalence of GUD was 7.45 with mean age at initial sexual experience as 19.2 years. Use of condom with regular and nonregular partners was 19.5% and 42.1%, respectively. Sexual orientation was heterosexual (92.2%) or homosexual (2.2%). There were 8 cases positive for HIV (8.9%). Herpes simplex virus ulcers were the commonest, followed by syphilis and chancroid. There were no cases of donovanosis and LGV. Conclusions. A valuable contribution of this study was in validating clinical and syndromic diagnoses of genital ulcers with an accurate aetiological diagnosis. Such reliable data will aid treatment and better define control measures of common agents and help eliminate diseases amenable to elimination, like donovanosis. Sumathi Muralidhar, Richa Talwar, Deepa Anil Kumar, Joginder Kumar, Manju Bala, Nilofar Khan, and V. Ramesh Copyright © 2013 Sumathi Muralidhar et al. All rights reserved. HPV Infection in a Cohort of HIV-Positive Men and Women: Prevalence of Oncogenic Genotypes and Predictors of Mucosal Damage at Genital and Oral Sites Tue, 05 Mar 2013 12:45:29 +0000 The aim of this study was to assess the prevalence of HPV infection and determinants of abnormal cytology in HIV-positive patients. In a cross-sectional study, patients of both sexes, asymptomatic for HPV, underwent anorectal (men)/cervical (women) and oral swabs. Cytology and HPV-PCR detection/genotyping (high- and low-risk genotypes, HR-LR/HPV) were performed. A total of 20% of the 277 enrolled patients showed oral HPV, with no atypical cytology; in men, anal HPV prevalence was 81% with 64% HR genotypes. In women, cervical HPV prevalence was 58% with 37% HR-HPV. The most frequent genotypes were HPV-16 and HPV-18; 37% of men and 20% of women harbored multiple genotypes. Also, 47% of men showed anal squamous intraepithelial lesions (SILs); 6% had high- and 35% low-grade SILs (HSILs/LSILs); 5% had atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance (ASC-US). HR-HPV was independently associated with anal-SIL in men (). Moreover, 37% of women showed cervical SIL: 14 ASC-US, 15 LSILs, 4 HSILs, and 1 in situ cancer. The presence of both LR and HR-HPV in women was independently associated with SIL ( and ). HR-HPV and atypical cytology were frequently identified in our cohort. HPV screening should be mandatory in HIV-infected subjects, and vaccine programs for HPV-negative patients should be implemented. Giulia Marchetti, Laura Comi, Teresa Bini, Marco Rovati, Francesca Bai, Barbara Cassani, Marina Ravizza, Marco Tarozzi, Alessandro Pandolfo, Serena Dalzero, Enrico Opocher, Solange Romagnoli, Antonio Carrassi, Silvano Bosari, and Antonella d'Arminio Monforte Copyright © 2013 Giulia Marchetti et al. All rights reserved.