Annals of Tropical Medicine and Public Health
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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 551-557

Exploring the HIV-risk practices of men who have sex with men in Port Harcourt city, Nigeria

1 Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
2 Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, College of Health Sciences University of Port Harcourt, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
3 Public Health Division, Rivers State Ministry of Health, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
4 Liverpool HIV Pharmacology Group, Institute of Translational Medicine, University of Liverpool, UK

Correspondence Address:
Charles I Tobin-West
Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, College of Health Sciences, University of Port Harcourt, Port Harcourt
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1755-6783.168721

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Background: Most men who have sex with men (MSM) in Nigeria are said to engage in high-risk sexual practices. This study aims to highlight these risk practices and proffer probable control solutions. Materials and Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional design and a purposive sampling method were used to interview 101 MSM linked to a clandestine network in a city suburb in Port Harcourt in October 2014. Data was analyzed using SPSS version 21.0. Univariate analysis was done to establish associated risk factors. Confidence limit was set at P = 0.05. Results: The age of study participants ranged between 18 and 45 years (mean = 25.35 years). The majority, 88 (87.1%) were single, had tertiary education and bisexuals, 85 (84.2%). Most, 62 (61.4%) reported to have between two and five sexual partners, while only 57 (53.4%) used condoms consistently with casual partners. All participants have heard about HIV, but only 70 (69.3%) had ever tested for HIV, while only 25 (28.1%) knew the HIV status of their sex partners. In the last 6 months preceding the study, 62 (61.4%) had insertive anal intercourse, while 57 (54.4%) had receptive anal intercourse. Also, 42 (41.6%) and 20 (19.8%), respectively, admitted to regular alcohol and Indian hemp use before sex. Finally, 70 (69.3%) used the internet in search of sex partners. Conclusions: MSM in Port Harcourt city engage in high-risk sexual practices. Emphasis on condom programming and promotion of pre-exposure prophylaxis in the National antiretroviral program might be useful in curbing the HIV epidemic among MSM. Key Messages: The use of the internet in search of sexual partners, alcohol use before sex, multiple sex partners, limited condom use and soaring transactional sex, all appear to be significant drivers of sexual risk taking among young men who have sex with men in Port Harcourt.

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