142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

Relationship dynamics and sexual health of sero-discordant MSM couples

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Tuesday, November 18, 2014 : 5:15 PM - 5:30 PM

Joshua G. Rosenberger, PhD, MPH , Department of Global and Community Health, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
Purpose: While 68% of new HIV infections occur among primary partners, highlighting the need to involve both partners in HIV intervention programs, most transmission prevention efforts among MSM in the United States continue to focus on individuals, ignoring the potentially vital the role the primary partner could be playing in the prevention of further transmission. Methods: As part of a qualitative study on relationship dynamics and sexual behaviors of serodiscordant MSM couples, 25 serodisordant male couples (50 individual participants) were recruited to complete a face-to-face semi-structured interview. Participants were asked open ended questions about their romantic and sexual relationship experiences, perceptions related to HIV risk and acquisition, and decision-making processes around HIV risk and protective behaviors. Interviews lasted 60-90 minutes, individuals were compensated $25 each, and data were analyzed using standard thematic techniques. Results: Participants expressed a desire for intimacy, friendship, trust and connection. Couples described a variety of prevention practices including condoms, strategic positioning, and sexual behaviors other than anal intercourse. While HIV was present in the lives of couples, it was not dominant in the daily interactions around sexual behavior. Although nearly all participants said they did not utilize PrEP or PEP, most mentioned the importance of suppressed viral load among the partner living with HIV influencing sexual decision making. Conclusions: These data aim to shed light on the effect of HIV status on sexual behaviors within primary partnerships in order to create effective intervention stratetgies to reduce HIV transmission among MSM.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related education
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the sexual behavior practices of men in serodiscordant relationships Discuss the prevention opportunities among MSM potentially exposed to HIV

Keyword(s): Sexual Risk Behavior, HIV/AIDS

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I hold a degree and have applied training in the field of sexual behavior, specifically related to LGBT populations
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.