Sexual Health Sexual Health Society
Publishing on sexual health from the widest perspective

Sexual Health

Sexual Health

Sexual Health publishes contributions on sexual health from the widest perspectives including HIV/AIDS, STIs, issues of sexuality, and reproductive health. Read more about the journalMore

Editors: Christopher Fairley and Roy Chan

Current Issue

Sexual Health

Volume 14 Number 3 2017

SH16013Prevalence of HIV among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Simon Graham, Catherine C. O'Connor, Stephen Morgan, Catherine Chamberlain and Jane Hocking
pp. 201-207

This is the first systematic review and meta-analysis to exame the prevalence of HIV among Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Although our study suggests the prevalence of HIV is low, the potential for HIV to increase exists especially among Aboriginal gay men and Aboriginal people who inject drugs. More community-based studies that are designed and implemented by Aboriginal people are needed that include Aboriginal people at risk and Aboriginal women. These studies need to exmine effective prevention messages, promote regular testing of at risk individuals to identify new infections early and trial culturally appropriate community and clinical strategies and support programs for Aboriginal people living with HIV.

SH16177Ten years on: a review of medical terminations of pregnancy performed in a sexual health clinic

Sandra G. Downing, Colette Cashman and Darren B. Russell
pp. 208-212

Women living in regional Queensland have limited access to medical termination of pregnancy (MToP) services. Abortion also remains in the Queensland Criminal Code leading to the potential criminal prosecution for both the woman and the provider. However, Cairns Sexual Health Service has been providing MToP services for 10 years demonstrating that this service can be safely and successfully integrated into a primary health care setting. This paper documents the clinical practice, the characteristics of the women undergoing the procedure and the outcomes over the past 5-year period at Cairns Sexual Health Service.

SH16191Australian gay and bisexual men’s online preferences about sex with HIV-positive partners

Garrett Prestage, Benjamin Bavinton, Denton Callander, Steven P. Philpot, Iryna Zablotska, Johann Kolstee, Phillip Keen, Jack Bradley and Fengyi Jin
pp. 221-228

On a large gay website, we investigated factors associated with excluding or including HIV-positive men as potential sex partners among 57 178 Australian profiles. Being younger, living outside major cities, not identifying as gay, always preferring safer sex and being of either Caucasian or Asian background were associated with excluding HIV-positive men as potential sex partners. The disinclination to include HIV-positive men as potential sex partners may be due to fear of infection, stigma or poor information about HIV.

SH16150Exploring the role of sex-seeking apps and websites in the social and sexual lives of gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men: a cross-sectional study

Kiffer G. Card, Nathan J. Lachowsky, Zishan Cui, Susan Shurgold, Maya Gislason, Jamie I. Forrest, Ashleigh J. Rich, David Moore, Eric Roth and Robert S. Hogg
pp. 229-237

This study examined the social and sexual factors associated with online sex seeking in a sample of 774 gay and bisexual men recruited using respondent-driven sampling. Results indicate that men who used apps and websites to seek sex were not significantly less likely to participate in the gay community and, in fact, were less likely to be socially isolated from other gay men. However, these men exhibited lower emotional attachment to the gay community and differing patterns of seroadaptive risk management with their recent sexual partners.


Almost a quarter of HIV patients managed at the Alfred Hospital had an episode of detectable viral load between 20 and 200 copies/mL. Of these, half were an isolated viral blip, and only 7% of those with persistent low level viremia progressed to virological failure. Clinician management of low level viremia was generally conservative.

SH16135Sexuality-related attitudes significantly modulate demographic variation in sexual health literacy in Tasmanian university students

Steve Simpson, Christine Clifford, Michael G. Quinn, Kaz Ross, Neil Sefton, Louise Owen, Leigh Blizzard and Richard Turner
pp. 244-253

Previously demonstrated differences in sexual health literacy among university students by birthplace and religion were robust to adjustment for demographics and sexual education. Using factor analysis, three constructs for attitudes regarding sexual morality were generated, corresponding to sexually conservative attitude, more sexually libertine attitude, and negative attitudes toward persons with HIV. These three attitudinal constructs were able to account for much of the differences in sexual health literacy by birthplace and religion which adjustment for sexual education could not. These results indicate the potent impact of attitude and belief on sexual health literacy and support cultural framing in the design of sexual education programs.

SH16171Sexual health knowledge and behaviour of young Sudanese Queenslanders: a cross-sectional study

Judith Dean, Marion Mitchell, Donald Stewart and Joseph Debattista
pp. 254-260

This study explored the sexual health knowledge, attitudes and behaviours of young Sudanese Queenslanders (n = 229). Patterns of sexual behaviour among this predominately refugee-background group are not dissimilar to those of other young Australians. However, the self-reported patterns of risk behaviour combined with relatively low levels of sexually transmissible infection and HIV knowledge suggest this group of young people remain sexually vulnerable. These findings support the need for sexual health education and interventions that address the contextualised needs for this group of young people, particularly early within their resettlement experience.

SH16137Chlamydia retesting and retest positivity rates: results from a state-wide laboratory data linkage study in Tasmania, 2012–13

Nicola Stephens, David Coleman, Kelly Shaw, Maree O'Sullivan, Alistair McGregor, Louise Cooley and Alison Venn
pp. 261-267

In this whole-of-state, population-level data linkage study, chlamydia retesting rates and retest positivity rates were measured in individuals aged 15 to 29 years. Retesting rates were low, and retest positivity was high, reinforcing the importance of promoting safer sex practices to prevent re-infection, partner notification and treatment, and retesting to minimise the risk of long-term sequelae.

SH16202Utility of risk-based chlamydia testing in primary care: analysis of retrospective surveillance data among women in Melbourne, Australia

Anna L. Wilkinson, Kathleen McNamee, Carol El-Hayek, Eric P. F. Chow, Catriona S. Bradshaw, Norm Roth, B. K. Tee, Mark Stoové and Margaret Hellard
pp. 268-273

The present study used retrospective surveillance data to estimate chlamydia incidence rates and identified risk factors for infection among women. Chlamydia incidence declined with age; however specific risk behaviours were associated with infection among older women. Chlamydia control remains a challenge, with uncertainty about the best approach; testing among older women at least, should be informed by risk.

SH16123Patient, staffing and health centre factors associated with annual testing for sexually transmissible infections in remote primary health centres

Belinda Hengel, Handan Wand, James Ward, Alice Rumbold, Linda Garton, Debbie Taylor-Thomson, Bronwyn Silver, Skye McGregor, Amalie Dyda, Jacqueline Mein, Janet Knox, Lisa Maher, John Kaldor, Rebecca Guy and on behalf of the STRIVE Investigators
pp. 274-281

In high-incidence Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) and Neisseria gonorrhoeae (NG) settings, annual re-testing is an important public health strategy. Using baseline laboratory data (2009–10) from a cluster randomised trial in 67 remote Aboriginal communities, the extent of annual re-testing was determined, along with the associated patient, staffing and health centre factors.


Among 5445 Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) testing occasions during a 4-year study period, we observed a significant increase in yield of pharyngeal CT testing, although yield of anogenital CT testing remained stable. Without pharyngeal CT testing, over a quarter of pharyngeal CT infections and almost 5.0% of all CT infections would not have been treated.

SH16036Managing two decades of visceral leishmaniasis and HIV co-infection: a case report that illustrates the urgent research needs in the field

Melissa L. Kelly, Angie N. Pinto, Dan Suan, Debbie Marriott, David A. Cooper and Sarah L. Pett
pp. 286-288

This case report highlights the challenges of diagnosis, monitoring and treatment in a visceral leishmaniasis and HIV co-infected patient. This patient developed multiple complications including renal and liver failure, pancytopenia with recurrent sepsis as well as anal cancer, depression and poor quality of life. Urgent research specific to this cohort is needed, with an emphasis on accessible and affordable treatment options.

SH16087First four failures of cefathiamidine to treat urogenital gonorrhoea in Guangzhou, China, 2014–15

Jingyao Liang, Ridong Yang, Xiaodong Li, Chao Bi, Xingdong Ye, Xibao Zhang and Wenling Cao
pp. 289-292

Four patients residing in China with urogenital gonorrhoea firstly failed to treat with 1000 mg cefathiamidine intramuscular. Ceftriaxone is still an effective treatment option for gonorrhoea in China. Continued monitoring of Neisseria gonorrhoeae susceptibility to cefathiamidine as well as ceftriaxone is imperative.

SH16215Sex education: findings from the Second Australian Study of Health and Relationships

Anna Yeung, Peter Aggleton, Juliet Richters, Andrew Grulich, Richard de Visser, Judy M. Simpson and Chris Rissel
pp. 293-295

Data from the Second Australian Study of Health and Relationships (ASHR2) was used to ascertain the associations between sex education and sexual health outcomes, including history of sexually transmissible infection (STI), early pregnancy, contraception use at first sex and level of STI knowledge. A total of 19 836 Australians provided information on sex education and these data were analysed using logistic regression. After adjusting for age, education and non-English-speaking background, the odds of using contraception at first sex and a high level of STI knowledge were increased in respondents reporting sex education that included information on condoms and contraception.

SH16077Acceptability of self-sampling in Portuguese women: the good, the bad or the ugly?

Jani Silva, Fátima Cerqueira and Rui Medeiros
pp. 298-300

This study assessed the acceptability of cervicovaginal self-sampling among Portuguese women. Most of the participants considered self-sampling a well-accepted method and felt no pain, no discomfort and no complexity. The willingness to repeat self-sampling was also reported by the majority of participants. Comparing self-sampling with physician-sampling experiences, women found the former less embarrassing, more comfortable or pleasant, less painful and considered it as the preferred method.

Online Early

The peer-reviewed and edited version of record published online before inclusion in an issue

Published online 20 July 2017

SH17035Patients with HIV and coronary disease: are we meeting national guidelines?

Sam Emmanuel, James Nadel, Damien Fagan, Sirinya Teeraananchai, Matthew Law and Cameron J. Holloway
 

Cardiovascular disease has a higher incidence in patients with HIV infection. Our study sought to determine whether national guidelines were being met to address this issue. We found that while some targets were being met, current screening and management for this patient group falls short of guidelines.


Previously we found that local patients were often not tested for HIV prior to commencing nucleoside/nucleotide reverse transcription inhibitor (NRTI) therapy for hepatitis B virus. We performed a national cross-sectional cohort study of physician practices via an online survey. A small majority (23/44; 52%) of participants reported always testing their hepatitis B virus patients for HIV prior to NRTI therapy, and 8/44 (18%) reported testing for HIV the majority of the time. Thirteen (30%) respondents reported testing only if risk factors were present. One physician reported a patient seroconverting to HIV while on TDF monotherapy.

Published online 12 July 2017

SH16117UriSwab: an effective transport medium for nucleic acid detection of Chlamydia trachomatis, Mycoplasma genitalium and Neisseria gonorrhoeae

Anna-Maria G. Costa, Suzanne M. Garland, Rebecca Guy, Handan Wand and Sepehr N. Tabrizi
 

Mailing of self-collected specimens for detection of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) is being used increasingly in Australia. However, postal regulations in Australia do not allow liquids such as urine to be sent in the post. The suitability of UriSwab for the detection of Chlamydia trachomatis, Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Mycoplasma genitalium by polymerase chain reaction, compared with neat urine and a flocked swab dipped in urine, as well as its performance at high and prolonged temperatures to mimic potential harsh transport conditions were evaluated.

Published online 26 June 2017

SH16164Attitudes to sexual health in the United States: results from a national survey of youth aged 15–25 years

Matthew Hogben, Christopher Harper, Melissa A. Habel, Kathryn Brookmeyer and Allison Friedman
 

Data from a large panel survey show that American youths’ attitudes to sexual health fit well with global sexual health definitions. Survey respondents believed dimensions of sexual health such as emotional fulfilment, pleasure, and mutual benefits in relationships were important components of overall sexual health. Increasing belief in the importance of sexual health was associated with sexual activity and also condom use and health care use.

Published online 26 June 2017

SH16207Trends in chlamydia and gonorrhoea testing and positivity in Western Australian Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal women 2001–2013: a population-based cohort study

Joanne Reekie, Basil Donovan, Rebecca Guy, Jane S. Hocking, John M. Kaldor, Donna B. Mak, Sallie Pearson, David Preen, Handan Wand, James Ward, Bette Liu and on behalf of the Chlamydia and Reproductive Health Outcome Investigators
 

This large data-linkage study of Western Australian women found significant increases in both chlamydia and gonorrhoea testing using nucleic acid amplification tests between 2001 and 2013. During this same period, chlamydia positivity remained highest in young Aboriginal women, at around 15%, with little change observed between overtime and despite increases in positivity in young non-Aboriginal women. Further gonorrhoea positivity was at least 10 times greater in young Aboriginal women than their non-Aboriginal counterparts. More effective prevention strategies and continued surveillance of chlamydia and gonorrhoea testing, positivity by age and risk groups are needed to address these disparities.

Published online 23 June 2017

SH16190Analysis of transmitted HIV drug resistance from 2005 to 2015 in Victoria, Australia: a comparison of the old and the new

Jodie D'Costa, Megan Gooey, Nicole Richards, Rizmina Sameer, Elaine Lee and Doris Chibo
 

This study outlines HIV-1 transmitted drug resistance to HIV-1 protease, reverse transcriptase and integrase inhibitors in Melbourne, Victoria from 2005 to 2015. During this time, there was a statistically significant decline in the prevalence of mutations at codons M41, K103 and T215 in the reverse transcriptase gene, but none for the protease. The presence of integrase inhibitor resistance mutations was assessed from 2010 to 2015 and found to be negligible.

Published online 23 June 2017

SH17068Rates of advertised condomless sex in the online profiles of private sex workers: a cross-sectional study

Edjoni Blackledge, Caroline Thng, Ruthy McIver and Anna McNulty
 

This study assessed the rate of condomless sex advertised in the online profiles of private sex workers in Sydney. None advertised condomless anal or vaginal sex and 50% advertised condomless oral sex. Age less than 25 years was associated with advertised condomless oral sex.

Published online 23 June 2017

SH16046Gonorrhoea testing and positivity in non-remote Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services

Mary Ellen Harrod, Sophia Couzos, James Ward, Mark Saunders, Basil Donovan, Belinda Hammond, Dea Delaney-Thiele, Mary Belfrage, Sid Williams, Lucy Watchirs Smith and John M. Kaldor
 

In this retrospective study, routine records on gonorrhea testing at four Aboriginal community controlled health services in Australian urban and regional settings were analysed. The proportion of patients aged 15–29 who were tested each year increased over time, and results were more often positive in people who also had chlamydia. Overall positivity was 1.6%, substantially lower than in remote communities of central and northern Australia, but high enough to justify routinely duplex testing for gonorrhea and chlamydia.


This study investigated the influence of partner and friendship networks on young adults (aged 18–30) sexually transmissible infection (STI) testing. Recruiting from nightlife precincts, 167 young people self-completed a questionnaire. Talking to partners and friends about STI testing was associated with testing rates for young adults, and increased numbers of sexual partners may be associated with the promotion of STI testing among friends and partners. Understanding young adult partner and friendship networks and their influence on STI testing practices may enhance health promotion efforts to increase testing for this group.

Published online 22 June 2017

SH17004Abortion: findings from women and men participating in the Understanding Fertility Management in contemporary Australia national survey

Heather Rowe, Sara Holton, Maggie Kirkman, Christine Bayly, Lynne Jordan, Kathleen McNamee, John McBain, Vikki Sinnott and Jane Fisher
 

This study of a population sample of women and men in Australia aged 18–50 years revealed that experience of abortion is common: one in six women and one in 10 men reported experiencing or being a partner in an abortion. Women who were socially disadvantaged, reported not being comfortable negotiating contraceptive use, and men who lived in a metropolitan area were more likely to report having experienced, or being a partner in, an abortion. Reporting past experiences of sexual coercion increased the likelihood of reporting abortion among both women and men.

Published online 22 June 2017

SH16198How partnership type and HIV seroconcordance affect HIV transmission risk in regular sexual partnerships: a cross-sectional survey of Australian gay and bisexual men

Benjamin R. Bavinton, Andrew E. Grulich, Duane Duncan, Iryna B. Zablotska and Garrett P. Prestage
 

Regular sexual partnerships among gay and bisexual men who practice condomless anal intercourse have not been well characterised in terms of partnership type, HIV seroconcordance and risk of HIV transmission. Primarily sexual regular partnerships (i.e. ‘fuckbuddies’) are common among gay men, but have largely been ignored in research and HIV prevention. Condomless sex is more common among regular sexual partnerships considered to be of a romantic, committed nature. However, factors associated with such romantic or committed partnerships can also protect against HIV transmission risk. Partnerships where one or both partners’ serostatus is unknown present the greatest transmission risk, especially those of a primarily sexual nature.

Published online 16 June 2017

SH16235Contraception – what about the men? Experience, knowledge and attitudes: a survey of 2438 heterosexual men using an online dating service

Mary Stewart, Todd Ritter, Deborah Bateson, Kevin McGeechan and Edith Weisberg
 

This research analysed 2438 responses from men using an online dating site on contraceptive, knowledge attitudes and beliefs. We found high contraceptive use, especially vasectomy, and a desire to be part of the decision making, especially in long term relationships. However there was low awareness of some of the more effective methods and misperceptions about method safety, especially the emergency contraceptive pill.

Published online 16 June 2017

SH17016Effect of attitudes towards patients on sexual history taking: a survey of Iranian–American physicians in California, USA

Mitra Rashidian, Victor Minichiello, Synnove F. Knutsen and Mark Ghamsary
 

This is the first descriptive cross-sectional survey of Iranian–American physicians, a subpopulation of physicians, as providers of sexual health care practicing in California, USA (n = 354). The experience of dual process of cultural influences (i.e. both home and the main stream cultures) are important factors affecting these physicians’ involvement in sexual history taking. This is a significant neglected area in sexual health care which highlights the need to have a greater understanding of influential factors regarding physicians who share similar conservative cultural backgrounds. These findings support the need for development of new strategies that reflect on physicians’ attitude as providers of sexual health care.

Published online 14 June 2017

SH16146Testing for chlamydial infection: are we meeting clinical guidelines? Evidence from a state-level laboratory data linkage analysis for 15- to 29-year-olds

Nicola Stephens, David Coleman, Kelly Shaw, Maree O' Sullivan, Alistair McGregor, Louise Cooley, Hassan Vally and Alison Venn
 

This data linkage study of all chlamydia tests conducted in 15-29 year olds at a state population level over a 2-year period, enables population rates of testing and test positivity to be reported. Results are compared to clinical guidelines and to the estimated testing levels required to reduce chlamydia prevalence. Chlamydia testing rates are lower than recommended levels in both males and females. This study provides a robust methodology that can meet the requirements of the Australian National Sexually Transmissible Infections Strategy by monitoring testing coverage and providing evidence to evaluate prevention and control programs.

Published online 14 June 2017

SH16240Prospective cohort study of childhood behaviour problems and adolescent sexual risk-taking: gender matters

S. Rachel Skinner, Jennifer Marino, Susan L. Rosenthal, Jeffrey Cannon, Dorota A. Doherty and Martha Hickey
 

Externalising (delinquent, aggressive) and internalising (anxious/depressed, withdrawn) behaviour problems are common in childhood. In a population-based birth cohort (the Western Australian Pregnancy Cohort (Raine) study), this study sought to determine relationships, by gender, between childhood behaviour problems and adolescent risky sexual behaviours and substance use. Externalising behaviour problems from as early as 5 years old in boys and 8 years old in girls predict a range of risky sexual behaviours in adolescence.

Published online 13 June 2017

SH16238Factors associated with unwanted sexual experiences of young Australian females: an observational study

Asvini K. Subasinghe, Yasmin L. Jayasinghe, John D. Wark, Alexandra Gorelik and Suzanne M. Garland
 

Sexual abuse and paedophilia are pervasive contemporary global issues. Thus raising awareness of the associated short and long term outcomes for the abused is pertinent to making sure relevant support systems are in place. We show that sexual behaviours and mental health are associated with childhood and adolescent unwanted sexual experiences (USEs) in young Australian females, but were unable to determine the direction of these associations. Longitudinal studies should be conducted to investigate whether there are groups of individuals who are at a high risk of experiencing childhood USE, so that high quality support services can be provided to these individuals.

Published online 08 June 2017

SH16034Prevalence and correlates of condom use among sexually active men who have sex with men in the United States: findings from the National Survey of Family Growth, 2002, 2006–10 and 2011–13

Winston E. Abara, Emeka Oraka, William L. Jeffries, Pollyanna Chavez, Muazzam Nasrullah and Elizabeth DiNenno
 

This study estimated the overall prevalence of condom use at last sex and by sexual risk behaviours among sexually active men who have sex with men (MSM) in the preceding 12 months. Approximately 31% of all MSM and 30–38% of MSM who reported at least one sexual risk behavior reported condom use at last sex. Race, recent STI diagnosis, and relationship status were associated with condom use at last sex. There was no difference in temporal trends in condom use at last sex across the three NSFG cycles. Continued promotion of consistent condom use mitigates HIV and STI risk and complements the effectiveness of new HIV prevention modalities such as pre-exposure prophylaxis.

Published online 08 June 2017

SH17026UK healthcare professionals’ uncertainties, barriers and facilitators to the introduction of targeted human papillomavirus vaccination for men who have sex with men

Tom Nadarzynski, Carrie Llewellyn, Daniel Richardson, Alex Pollard and Helen Smith
 

Healthcare professionals’ recommendation is one of the strongest predictors of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine uptake. Due to concerns about the compromised effectiveness of HPV vaccination in adult sexually active men who have sex with men (MSM), some UK healthcare professionals might be hesitant to promote the vaccine to their patients. There is an urgent need to develop guidelines on HPV vaccination for MSM, raise awareness about HPV-related diseases in MSM, and enable integrated clinic procedures on vaccinations in order to achieve optimal uptake.

Published online 05 June 2017

SH17048The primary health care of transgender adults

Stuart Aitken
 

Gender dysphoria is associated with significant health disparity. Although specialised interventions such as endocrine therapy and surgery are safe and effective, mortality for the transgender population remains substantially higher than the general population. Primary health care is one of the components that contribute to health discrepancy for transgender individuals, but the medical needs of transgender patients are often misunderstood. This paper addresses some of the main primary care issues for transgender populations.


This study examined sexual and other risk behaviours among young adults in Miami, Florida, comparing unlicensed driving (UD) offenders and non-UD offenders. Compared with others, UD offenders were more likely to report additional sexual risk behaviours. Results suggest that locating sexual risk reduction interventions inside of the justice system would benefit UD offenders.

Published online 30 May 2017

SH16054Partnership agreements less likely among young gay and bisexual men in Australia – data from a national online survey of gay and bisexual men

Johann Kolstee, Steven Philpot, Jeffrey Grierson, Benjamin R. Bavinton, Duane Duncan and Garrett Prestage
 

In this paper differences in partnership agreements among gay and bisexual men (GBM) were assessed. The ability to communicate with a partner about sexual agreements has important sexual health implications for GBM. Regarding the nature of their partnership with their primary regular partner, younger men were less likely to have an agreement of any sort and were less likely to have discussed it. Due to less communication with partners about sexual agreements, when young GBM engage in sexual risk behaviour they may be at an increased risk of HIV and other sexually transmissible infections.

Published online 30 May 2017

SH17014Gender dysphoria and the controversy over the Safe Schools program

Patrick Parkinson
 

This article reviews problems with the Safe Schools program in Australia which seeks to protect lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender and intersex young people from bullying. The information in this program to Principals, teachers and young people is inaccurate and misleading. The program, as presently designed, may actually cause harm because it promotes gender transitioning without expert medical advice. The great majority of children resolve gender dysphoria issues around the time of puberty.


This article discusses transgender and gender diverse (TGD) student rights in a range of Australian laws and education policies. It shows how the inclusion of TGD students, particularly in sexuality education, is reinforced in the current Australian National Curricula. Finally, it considers research on Australian TGD students’ educational attainment, experiences of transphobic abuse and violence, and experiences in contexts where they do and do not have staff (and other) support. It promotes a shift from harmful approaches of victimising TGD students, towards celebrating their resilience and social contributions.

Published online 18 May 2017

SH16149Active syphilis and its association with HIV and sexual risk behaviours in a multicity sample of men who have sex with men and transgender women in Peru

Lia N. Pizzicato, Panagiotis Vagenas, Pedro Gonzales, Javier R. Lama, Monica Pun, Jorge Sanchez and Frederick L. Altice
 

Syphilis in Peru is heavily concentrated among men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender women (TGW). A cross-sectional analysis was conducted to better understand the correlates of active syphilis infection using a multicity sample of over 5000 MSM and TGW in Peru. Findings support the need for combined HIV and syphilis screening among MSM and TGW populations and also indicate differing syphilis epidemics throughout the country and in populations of TGW.

Published online 18 May 2017

SH17005Tobacco smoking and sexual difficulties among Australian adults: a cross-sectional study

Li Ming Wen, Chris Rissel, Yan Cheng, Juliet Richters and Richard O. de Visser
 

Few studies have examined smoking and female sexual difficulties. Data for this study came from the Second Australian Study of Health and Relationships (2012–13), which includes a representative sample of 18 427 sexually active Australian men and women (aged 16–69 years). Current tobacco smoking was associated with sexual difficulties in both men and women. This was more evident among male heavy smokers. For women, even light smoking was associated with not finding sex pleasurable and being unable to come to orgasm.

Published online 18 May 2017

SH16179Pregnant young women’s attitudes about microbicides: the anticipated influence of the grandmother and father of the baby on microbicide use

Jenny K. R. Francis, Lauren Dapena Fraiz, Marina Catallozzi, Ariel M. deRoche, Christine Mauro and Susan L. Rosenthal
 

Pregnant young women’s attitudes about their grandmother and father-of-the-baby’s role in decision-making and involvement in microbicide use were assessed. Greater grandmother involvement in microbicide use was significantly associated with being younger, having no reproductive tract infection or contraceptive-ring-use history. Greater father involvement in use was associated with being in a relationship with him. Strategies for engaging grandmothers and fathers in microbicide use should be developed.

Published online 18 May 2017

SH16170Sexual difficulties faced by men in the Solomon Islands: a mixed-methods study

Paraniala Silas C. Lui, Michael P. Dunne, Philip Baker and Verzilyn Isom
 

This study describes men’s sexual difficulties and barriers to reproductive health care in the Solomon Islands. The study included qualitative inquiry and a quantitative quasi-randomised quota sample household survey. Only a few men had ever sought professional health care for reproductive health problems, while many men preferred to use kastom medicine for sexual problems. Comorbid non-communicable diseases, low health-related quality of life and dissatisfaction with sexual relationships were independently correlated with sexual difficulties. The findings strongly suggests the need for comprehensive health services that are gender-specific and sensitive to the sexual difficulties of Islander men.

Published online 18 May 2017

SH16162Prevalence of porA pseudogene deletion among Neisseria gonorrhoeae isolates referred to the UK

Martina Toby, Pamela Saunders, Michelle Cole, Vlad Grigorjev, Sarah Alexander and Catherine Ison
 

Some laboratories use porA pseudogene targeted real-time polymerase chain reactions to confirm the Neisseria gonorrhoeae status of clinical specimens, however porA negative strains have been sporadically reported. In this UK study, less than 0.4% (2/533) of gonococcal isolates examined were determined to porA-negative isolates. Low prevalence indicates that although these isolates do not present a major public health problem, microbiologists should remain vigilant.

Published online 15 May 2017

SH16221Reporting pre-exposure prophylaxis use in Craigslist personal advertisements among men seeking sex with men in the United States

Brandon J. Hill, Trevor Bak, Alicia VandeVusse and Kris Rosentel
 

This study describes the self-reported use of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) in the personal advertisements of men seeking sex with men in the United Sates on the online classified advertisement site, Craigslist. Overall use of PrEP in personal advertisements was low. However, self-reported PrEP use was often in conjunction with other sexual risk behaviours. Findings underscore the need for increased public PrEP awareness, particularly among men seeking sex with men, as well as the importance emphasising sexually transmissible infection prevention behaviours (i.e. condom use) used in conjunction with PrEP.

Published online 09 May 2017

SH16151Retrospective study of hepatitis C outcomes and treatment in HIV co-infected persons from the Australian HIV Observational Database

Rainer Puhr, Stephen T. Wright, Jennifer F. Hoy, David J. Templeton, Nicolas Durier, Gail V. Matthews, Darren Russell and Matthew G. Law
 

The widespread availability of direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) is expected to drastically improve the treatment uptake and cure rate of hepatitis C virus (HCV). This paper assesses rates of and factors associated with HCV treatment uptake and cure in the HIV co-infected population in Australia before access to DAAs to establish a baseline for a new treatment era.


Detained African American adolescent girls are particularly vulnerable to contracting HIV/STIs when compared to other adolescent populations. This study examines the heightened risk for HIV/STIs when HIV/STI knowledge is high by applying the principle of least interest to understand sexual risk-taking among a detained sample of young African American women. Although some girls had a high degree of knowledge regarding the transmission of HIV/STIs, this knowledge interacted with the endorsement of a relationship imperative to increase HIV/STI risk among this group. Risk reduction interventions are needed that acknowledge the vulnerabilities for this population and increase the opportunities for appropriate HIV/STI prevention efforts.


Among 125 HIV-infected young Black men who have sex with men, 70% disclosed their HIV status to the first male partner they had sex with following diagnosis. Men not making this same disclosure were about three times more likely to report condomless sex with that first, post-diagnosis, male partner. Not disclosing HIV serostatus was associated with perceiving a greater level of partner-related barriers to condom use.

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