170117 Relations Between Sexually Transmitted Infection Diagnosis and Sexual Compulsivity in a Community-Based Sample of Men Who Have Sex with Men (MSM)

Monday, October 27, 2008: 4:30 PM

Brian Dodge, PhD , Center for Sexual Health Promotion, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
Michael Reece, PhD, MPH , Center for Sexual Health Promotion, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
Debby Herbenick, PhD, MPH , Center for Sexual Health Promotion, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
Christopher M. Fisher, MA , Center for Sexual Health Promotion, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
Sonya Satinsky, MPH , Center for Sexual Health Promotion, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
Nathan W. Stupiansky, PhD , School of Medicine, Indiana University, Indianapolis, IN
Background: Sexually transmitted infections (STI) are a risk factor for HIV acquisition, as well as a biomarker of other risks. The aim of this study was to assess relations between sexual compulsivity and history of STI diagnosis and testing among a community-based sample of men who have sex with men (MSM) in a mid-size urban area of the Midwestern United States.

Methods: Sexual health data were collected from 504 MSM in the metropolitan area of Indianapolis, Indiana, using a community-based participatory research (CBPR) approach. Sexual compulsivity scores were assessed using the Sexual Compulsivity Scale (SCS).

Results: Reliability and construct validity of the SCS were determined to be high. Men who scored high on the SCS reported higher levels of sexual risk behavior with both male and female partners and were significantly more likely to have been diagnosed with sexually transmitted infections (including chlamydia, gonorrhea, both Hepatitis A and B, and syphilis) than other men. Men who scored high on the SCS were not more likely than other men to have been tested for STI, despite higher levels of sexual risk.

Discussion: The SCS may be useful as a supplemental instrument in public health programs and health care settings that encourage men to assess their sexual behaviors and make decisions to pursue STI or HIV screening. For those already diagnosed with an STI, the SCS may help providers to identify the components of sexual behaviors that increase the likelihood that an STI will be transmitted to a sexual partner.

Learning Objectives:
Upon completion of this session, the participants will learn: 1. the continued promotion of condoms for the prevention of HIV and other STI necessitates that providers and researchers have an understanding of the perceptions that those targeted for sexual-health programmes have regarding the fit and feel of condoms. 2. there is an urgent need to understand perceptions of condoms that exist among African-American MSM in the United States, given the disproportionate impact of HIV and STI on these men, their prioritisation in condom campaigns and the lack of research conducted with this population. 3. findings of this study indicate that substantial proportions of African-American men report problems with the fit and feel of condoms and that these perceived problems are associated with condom failure. 4. these findings offer important insights for condom manufacturers and the HIV/STI providers who promote condom use.

Keywords: Sexual Risk Behavior, STD

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I was responsible for primary scientific oversight of the work presented in this abstract.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.