ResearchPad - copulation https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Sexual norms and the intention to use healthcare services related to female genital cutting: A qualitative study among Somali and Sudanese women in Norway]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_15732 Female Genital Cutting (FGC) is a traditionally meaningful practice in Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. It is associated with a high risk of long-term physical and psychosexual health problems. Girls and women with FGC-related health problems need specialized healthcare services such as psychosexual counseling, deinfibulation, and clitoral reconstruction. Moreover, the need for psychosexual counseling increases in countries of immigration where FGC is not accepted and possibly stigmatized. In these countries, the practice loses its cultural meaning and girls and women with FGC are more likely to report psychosexual problems. In Norway, a country of immigration, psychosexual counseling is lacking. To decide whether to provide this and/or other services, it is important to explore the intention of the target population to use FGC-related healthcare services. That is as deinfibulation, an already available service, is underutilized. In this article, we explore whether girls and women with FGC intend to use FGC-related healthcare services, regardless of their availability in Norway.MethodsWe conducted 61 in-depth interviews with 26 Somali and Sudanese participants with FGC in Norway. We then validated our findings in three focus group discussions with additional 17 participants.FindingsWe found that most of our participants were positive towards psychosexual counseling and would use it if available. We also identified four cultural scenarios with different sets of sexual norms that centered on getting and/or staying married, and which largely influenced the participants’ intention to use FGC-related services. These cultural scenarios are the virgin, the passive-, the conditioned active-, and the equal- sexual partner scenarios. Participants with negative attitudes towards the use of almost all of the FGC-related healthcare services were influenced by a set of norms pertaining to virginity and passive sexual behavior. In contrast, participants with positive attitudes towards the use of all of these same services were influenced by another set of norms pertaining to sexual and gender equality. On the other hand, participants with positive attitudes towards the use of services that can help to improve their marital sexual lives, yet negative towards the use of premarital services were influenced by a third set of norms that combined norms from the two aforementioned sets of norms.ConclusionThe intention to use FGC-related healthcare services varies between and within the different ethnic groups. Moreover, the same girl or woman can have different attitudes towards the use of the different FGC-related healthcare services or even towards the same services at the different stages of her life. These insights could prove valuable for Norwegian and other policy-makers and healthcare professionals during the planning and/or delivery of FGC-related healthcare services. ]]> <![CDATA[Determinants of HIV testing among Filipino women: Results from the 2013 Philippine National Demographic and Health Survey]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_13810 The prevalence of having ever tested for HIV in the Philippines is very low and is far from the 90% target of the Philippine Department of Health (DOH) and UNAIDS, thus the need to identify the factors associated with ever testing for HIV among Filipino women.MethodsWe analysed the 2013 Philippine National Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS). The NDHS is a nationally representative survey which utilized a two-stage stratified design to sample Filipino women aged 15–49. We considered the following exposures in our study: socio-demographic characteristics of respondent and her partner (i.e., age of respondent, age of partner, wealth index, etc.), sexual practices and contraception (i.e., age at first intercourse, condom use, etc.), media access, tobacco use, HIV knowledge, tolerance to domestic violence, and women’s empowerment. The outcome variable is HIV testing. We used logistic regression for survey data to study the said associations.ResultsOut of 16,155 respondents, only 372 (2.4%) have ever tested for HIV. After adjusting for confounders, having tertiary education (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 2.15; 95% Confidence Interval (CI): 1.15–4.04), living with partner (aOR = 1.72; 95% CI: 1.19–2.48), tobacco use (aOR = 1.87; 95% CI: 1.13–3.11); belonging to the middle class (aOR = 2.72; 95% CI: 1.30–5.67), richer (aOR = 3.00; 95% CI: 1.37–5.68), and richest (aOR = 4.14; 95% CI: 1.80–5.91) populations, having weekly television access (aOR = 1.75; 95% CI: 1.04–2.94) or internet access (aOR = 2.01; 95% CI: 1.35–3.00), living in a rural area (aOR = 1.87; 95% CI: 1.34–2.61); and being a Muslim (aOR = 2.30; 95% CI: 1.15–4.57) were associated with ever testing for HIV.ConclusionsThe low percentage of respondents who test for HIV is a call to further strengthen efforts to promote HIV testing among Filipino women. Information on its determinants can be used to guide the crafting and implementation of interventions to promote HIV testing to meet DOH and UNAIDS targets. ]]> <![CDATA[Voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) for prevention of heterosexual transmission of HIV and risk compensation in adult males in Soweto: Findings from a programmatic setting]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c8acc83d5eed0c48498f8f2

Background

Clinical trials have clearly shown a reduction in HIV acquisition through voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC). However, data assessing risk compensation under programmatic conditions is limited.

Methods

This was a prospective cohort of HIV seronegative males aged 18–40 years receiving VMMC between November 2012 and July 2014. HIV serostatus was determined pre and post VMMC. Risk compensation was defined as a decrease in condom use at last sex act and/or an increase in concurrent sexual relationships, both measured twelve months post-circumcision.

Results

A total of 233 males were enrolled and underwent voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) for prevention against HIV. There was no evidence of risk compensation post-circumcision as defined in this study. Significant increases in proportion of participants in the 18–24 years age group who knew the HIV status of their sexual partner (39% to 56%, p = 0.0019), self-reported condom use at last sex act (21% to 34%, p = 0.0106) and those reporting vaginal sexual intercourse in the past 12 months (67% to 79%, p-value = <0.0001) were found. In both 18–24 and 25–40 years age groups, there was a significant increase in perception of being at risk of contracting HIV (70% to 84%, p-value = <0.0001).

Conclusion

No significant risk compensation was observed in this study on comparing pre-and post-circumcision behaviour. An increase in proportion of participants in the 18–24 years age group who had vaginal intercourse in the first 12 months post-circumcision as a possibility of risk compensation was minimal and negated by an increase in proportion of those reporting using a condom at the last sex act, increase in knowledge of partner’s HIV status and lack of increase in alcohol post-circumcision.

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<![CDATA[Food insecurity and violence in a prospective cohort of women at risk for or living with HIV in the U.S.]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c89779fd5eed0c4847d31be

Background

Food insecurity and violence are two major public health issues facing U.S. women. The link between food insecurity and violence has received little attention, particularly regarding the temporal ordering of events. The present study used data from the Women’s Interagency Human Immunodeficiency Virus Study to investigate the longitudinal association of food insecurity and violence in a cohort of women at risk for or living with HIV.

Methods

Study participants completed six assessments from 2013–16 on food insecurity (operationalized as marginal, low, and very low food security) and violence (sexual or physical, and psychological). We used multi-level logistic regression, controlling for visits (level 1) nested within individuals (level 2), to estimate the association of experiencing violence.

Results

Among 2,343 women (8,528 visits), we found that victims of sexual or physical violence (odds ratio = 3.10; 95% confidence interval: 1.88, 5.19) and psychological violence (odds ratio = 3.00; 95% confidence interval: 1.67, 5.50) were more likely to report very low food security. The odds of experiencing violence were higher for women with very low food security at both the current and previous visit as compared to only the current visit. HIV status did not modify these associations.

Conclusions

Food insecurity was strongly associated with violence, and women exposed to persistent food insecurity were even more likely to experience violence. Food programs and policy must consider persistent exposure to food insecurity, and interpersonal harms faced by food insecure women, such as violence.

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<![CDATA[HIV self-testing in Spain: A valuable testing option for men-who-have-sex-with-men who have never tested for HIV]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6dc9f4d5eed0c48452a5cf

Background

We assessed the capacity of HIV self-testing to promote testing among untested men who have sex with men (MSM) and determined the most benefited subpopulations.

Methods

An online questionnaire was disseminated on several gay websites in Spain from September 2012 to April 2013. We used Poisson regression to estimate factors associated with the intention to use self-testing if already available. Among those who reported intention of use, we assessed several aspects related to the testing and linkage to care process by type of barrier reported: low perceived risk (LR), structural barriers (SB) and fear of testing positive (FTP).

Results

Of 2589 never-tested MSM, 83% would have used self-testing if already available. Intention of use was associated with age ≥30 (adj.PR, 95%CI: 1.05, 1.01–1.10), having had protected (adj.PR, 95%CI: 1.15, 1.02–1.30) or unprotected (adj.PR, 95%CI: 1.21, 1.07–1.37) anal intercourse and reporting FTP (adj.PR, 95%CI: 1.12, 1.05–1.20) or SB to access HIV testing (adj.PR, 95%CI: 1.23, 1.19–1.28). Among those who reported intention of using a self-testi, 78.3% declared it their preferred option (83.8% in the SB group; p<0.001), and 56.8% would always use this testing option (60.9% among the SB group; p = 0.001). In the case of obtaining a positive self-test, 69.3% would seek confirmatory testing, 15.3% would self-test again before taking any decision and 13.0% reported not being sure of what they would do.

Conclusion

HIV self-testing in Spain has the potential of becoming a highly used testing methodology for untested MSM and could represent the gateway to testing especially among older, at risk MSM who report SB or FTP as main barriers to testing.

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<![CDATA[Cash transfers and HIV/HSV-2 prevalence: A replication of a cluster randomized trial in Malawi]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5ca315d5eed0c48441f0e5

Introduction

In this paper we perform a replication analysis of “Effect of a cash transfer programme for schooling on prevalence of HIV and herpes simplex type 2 in Malawi: a cluster randomised trial” by Sarah Baird and others published in “The Lancet” in 2012. The original study was a two-year cluster randomized intervention trial of never married girls aged 13–22 in Malawi. Enumeration areas were randomized to either an intervention involving cash transfer (conditional or unconditional of school enrollment) or control. The study included 1708 Malawian girls, who were enrolled at baseline and had biological testing for HIV and herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) at 18 months. The original findings showed that in the cohort of girls enrolled in school at baseline, the intervention had an effect on school enrollment, sexual outcomes, and HIV and HSV-2 prevalence. However, in the baseline school dropout cohort, the original study showed no intervention effect on HIV and HSV-2 prevalence.

Methods

We performed a replication of the study to investigate the consistency and robustness of key results reported. A pre-specified replication plan was approved and published online. Cleaned data was obtained from the original authors. A pure replication was conducted by reading the methods section and reproducing the results and tables found in the original paper. Robustness of the results were examined with alternative analysis methods in a measurement and estimation analysis (MEA) approach. A theory of change analysis was performed testing a causal pathway, the effect of intervention on HIV awareness, and whether the intervention effect depended on the wealth of the individual.

Results

The pure replication found that other than a few minor discrepancies, the original study was well replicated. However, the randomization and sampling weights could not be verified due to the lack of access to raw data and a detailed sample selection plan. Therefore, we are unable to determine how sampling influenced the results, which could be highly dependent on the sample. In MEA it was found that the intervention effect on HIV prevalence in the baseline schoolgirls cohort was somewhat sensitive to model choice, with a non-significant intervention effect for HIV depending on the statistical model used. The intervention effect on HSV-2 prevalence was more robust in terms of statistical significance, however, the odds ratios and confidence intervals differed from the original result by more than 10%. A theory of change analysis showed no effect of intervention on HIV awareness. In a causal pathway analysis, several variables were partial mediators, or potential mediators, indicating that the intervention could be working through its effect on school enrollment or selected sexual behaviors.

Conclusions

The effect of intervention on HIV prevalence in the baseline schoolgirls was sensitive to the model choice; however, HSV-2 prevalence results were confirmed. We recommend that the results from the original published analysis indicating the impact of cash transfers on HIV prevalence be treated with caution.

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<![CDATA[Prevalence and correlates of lifetime and recent HIV testing among men who have sex with men (MSM) who use mobile geo-social networking applications in Greater Tokyo]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5217c1d5eed0c4847944f2

Men who have sex with men (MSM) are disproportionately burdened by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), accounting for 78% of all Japanese male HIV cases in 2016. Over 30% of newly identified HIV infections in Japan are diagnosed as AIDS annually, suggesting a large proportion of people living with HIV were unaware of their own infection status. An estimated two-thirds of Japanese men who have sex with men (MSM) are not attached to the gay community, and previous studies have largely sampled gay venues, thus, previous studies have likely failed to reach many men in this population. This study therefore examined HIV testing prevalence and correlates among MSM in Greater Tokyo who use gay mobile geo-social networking applications (gay mobile apps), which have been found to increase access to MSM not traditionally accessible through venue-based surveys. Among a sample of 1657 MSM recruited through advertisements on gay mobile apps, the prevalence of lifetime and six-monthly HIV testing was 72.8% and 29.7% respectively. In multiple regression analysis, higher lifetime HIV testing was associated with older age, education, HIV knowledge, anal intercourse with regular and casual male partners, and gay venue attendance. Testing was negatively associated with regular male partner condom use, marriage, residing outside central Tokyo and having both male and female partners. These results indicated that MSM who use gay mobile apps in Greater Tokyo do not meet the CDC yearly testing recommendations for high risk populations. Considering limited HIV prevention funding in Japan for MSM, moderate lifetime and recent testing, and the large number of gay mobile app users, utilization of popular gay mobile apps to promote nearby HIV testing facilities may be an effective prevention policy to target non-community attached MSM, particularly at-risk youth and individuals at risk of sudden-onset AIDS.

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<![CDATA[Does a history of sexual and physical childhood abuse contribute to HIV infection risk in adulthood? A study among post-natal women in Harare, Zimbabwe]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c390bb2d5eed0c48491ddfa

Background

Sexual and physical abuse in childhood creates a great health burden including on mental and reproductive health. A possible link between child abuse and HIV infection has increasingly attracted attention. This paper investigated whether a history of child physical and sexual abuse is associated with HIV infection among adult women.

Methods

A cross sectional survey was conducted among 2042 postnatal women (mean age = 26y) attending six public primary health care clinics in Harare, Zimbabwe within 6 weeks post-delivery. Clinic records were reviewed for mother’s antenatal HIV status. Participants were interviewed about childhood abuse including physical or sexual abuse before 15 years of age, forced first sex before 16, HIV risk factors such as age difference at first sex before age 16. Multivariate analyses assessed the associations between mother’s HIV status and child physical and sexual abuse while controlling for confounding variables.

Results

More than one in four (26.6%) reported abuse before the age of 15: 14.6% physical abuse and 9.1% sexual abuse,14.3% reported forced first sex and 9.0% first sex before 16 with someone 5+ years older. Fifteen percent of women tested HIV positive during the recent antenatal care visit. In multivariate analysis, childhood physical abuse (aOR 3.30 95%CI 1.58–6.90), sexual abuse (3.18 95%CI: 1.64–6.19), forced first sex (aOR 1.42, 95%CI: 1.00–2.02), and 5+ years age difference with first sex partner (aOR 1.66 95%CI 1.09–2.53) were independently associated with HIV infection.

Conclusion

This study highlights that child physical and/or sexual abuse may increase risk for HIV acquisition. Further research is needed to assess the pathways to HIV acquisition from childhood to adulthood. Prevention of child abuse must form part of the HIV prevention agenda in Sub-Saharan Africa.

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<![CDATA[Women’s reproductive health decision-making: A multi-country analysis of demographic and health surveys in sub-Saharan Africa]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c3fa58fd5eed0c484ca5c5a

Introduction

Women’s ability to make decisions regarding their reproductive health has important implications for their health and well-being. We studied the socio-demographic factors affecting reproductive health decision-making among women in 27 sub-Sahara African countries.

Materials and methods

The study made use of pooled data from current Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) conducted from January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2016 in 27 countries in sub-Sahara African. Binary and multivariate logistic regression models were used to investigate the associations of women’s socio-demographic factors with decision-making regarding sexual reproductive health.

Results

The proportion of women who can ask their partners to use a condom during sexual intercourse ranged from lowest in Mali (16.6%) to highest in Namibia (93.4%). Furthermore, the proportion of women who can refuse sex ranged from 18.3% in Mali to 92.4% in Namibia. Overall, approximately every five out of ten women can ask their partners to use a condom, six out ten women could refuse their partners sex and seven out of ten women could make at least 1 decision. Women from rural areas (OR = 0.51, CI = 0.48–0.54), those with no education (OR = 0.11, CI = 0.10–0.12), Muslim women (OR = 0.29, CI = 0.27–0.31), women not working (OR = 0.53, CI = 0.51–0.56) and women whose partners had no education (OR = 0.17, CI = 0.16–0.19) were less likely to make a decision on their reproductive health.

Conclusion

Residence, age, level of education, religion, occupation and partner’s education were found to be associated with women’s decision-making about sexual intercourse, condom use and reproductive health decision-making index. This study contributes to the discourse on reproductive health decision-making in Africa. Policies and intervention targeted at improving women’s autonomy and empowering them to take charge of their sexual and reproductive health issues should be focused on these factors.

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<![CDATA[Incidence of sexually transmitted infections in men who have sex with men and who are at substantial risk of HIV infection – A meta-analysis of data from trials and observational studies of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c0ed782d5eed0c484f142c2

Background

Men who have sex with men (MSM) and who engage in condomless anal intercourse with casual partners are at high risk of acquiring sexually transmitted infections (STIs), but reliable epidemiological data are scarce. Studies on HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) enrol MSM who indicate that they engage in behaviour that puts them at high risk of acquiring HIV. Because they also screen for STIs at regular intervals, these studies may serve as a valuable source to estimate incidence rates of STIs in this subpopulation of MSM.

Methods

We systematically searched for trials and observational studies of PrEP in MSM that reported data on the incidence of STIs during the study period. Incidence rates were calculated as events per 100 person-years (py) with 95% confidence intervals (CI). Data from individual studies were pooled building subgroups along study types and geography. We performed sensitivity analyses, including data only from studies that met pre-defined quality criteria.

Results

Twenty-four publications on 20 studies were included. The majority of studies reported that sexual behaviour and/or STI incidence remained stable or decreased during the study period. For syphilis, incidence rates ranged from 1.8/100py to 14.9/100py, the pooled estimate was 9.1/100py (95%-CI: 7.7–10.9). Incidence rates for gonorrhoea and chlamydia of any site ranged from 13.3/100py to 43.0/100py and 15.1/100py to 48.5/100py, respectively. Considering only studies that met the criteria for sensitivity analysis yielded pooled estimates of 39.6/100py (95%-CI: 32.9–47.6) and 41.8/100py (95%-CI: 33.9–51.5), respectively. The overall estimate for hepatitis C incidence was 1.3/100py (95%-CI: 1.0–1.8).

Conclusions

Despite partly heterogeneous results, the data depict high incidence rates of STIs among MSM who engage in higher-risk sexual behaviours such as condomless sex with casual partners. This subpopulation of MSM requires access to STI screening at close intervals. By offering access to structures that provide regular STI monitoring and prompt treatment, PrEP may not only decrease HIV incidence but also have beneficial effects in decreasing the burden of STIs.

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<![CDATA[Sexual behaviors, HIV knowledge, HIV testing attitudes and recent HIV testing among female entertainment workers in Cambodia: A cross-sectional study]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b4a08de463d7e3fbe689131

Background

In Cambodian context, female entertainment workers (FEWs) are young women working at establishments such as karaoke bars, restaurants, beer gardens or massage parlors. FEWs may sell sex to male patrons and are considered a high-risk group for HIV. This study aimed to identify factors associated with recent HIV testing among FEWs in Cambodia to inform future prevention activities.

Methods

Data were collected in 2014 as part of the evaluation of a larger HIV prevention project. A two-stage cluster sampling method was used to select participants from Phnom Penh and Siem Reap for face-to-face interviews using a structured questionnaire. A logistic regression model was constructed to identify independent factors associated with recent HIV testing.

Results

Data were collected from 667 FEWs with a mean age of 25.6 (SD = 5.5). Of total, 81.7% reported ever having had an HIV test, and 52.8% had at least one test in the past six months. After adjustment for other covariates, factors independently associated with recent HIV testing included living in Phnom Penh (AOR = 2.17, 95% CI = 1.43–3.28), having received HIV education in the past six months (AOR = 3.48, 95% CI = 2.35–5.15), disagreeing with a statement that ‘I would rather not know if I have HIV’ (AOR = 2.15, 95% CI = 1.41–3.30), agreeing with a statement that ‘getting tested for HIV helps people feel better’ (AOR = 0.32, 95% CI = 0.13–0.81) and not using a condom in the last sexual intercourse with a non-commercial partner (AOR = 0.48, 95% CI = 0.26–0.88).

Conclusions

FEWs with greater knowledge and positive attitudes towards HIV testing got tested for HIV more frequently than those with lesser knowledge and less positive attitudes. These findings suggest that future interventions should focus on disseminating tailored health messages around testing practices as well as specific topics such as condom use with non-commercial partners.

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<![CDATA[Factors Associated with Knowledge of and Willingness for Adult Male Circumcision in Changsha, China]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da0fab0ee8fa60b78e54

Background

Male circumcision (MC) has been shown to reduce the risk of male genital diseases. MC is not commonly practiced among Chinese males and little is known about the factors associated with their knowledge of and willingness for MC. This study was to explore the knowledge regarding the foreskin among Chinese males and to identify factors associated with their willingness to undergo circumcision.

Methods

A total of 237 patients with redundant prepuce/phimosis were interviewed through face-to-face interviews. The items on the questionnaire included: demographics, an objective scale assessing knowledge about the foreskin, willingness to have MC, the attitudes of sexual partners and doctors toward redundant prepuce/phimosis, and the approaches that patients used to acquire knowledge regarding the prepuce. Univariate analysis and multiple logistic regression analysis were performed to identify factors that are associated with willingness to be circumcised (WTC).

Results

A total of 212 patients completed the interview. Multivariable logistic regression showed that three factors were significantly associated with WTC: being married (OR = 0.43), perceiving redundant prepuce/phimosis as a disease (OR = 1.93), and if a patient’s partner supported MC (OR = 1.39). 58% (n = 122) had received information about the foreskin from another party: 18% (n = 37) from school, 8% (n = 17) from family, 17% (n = 36) from friends, 27% (n = 57) from health care providers. About 4% (n = 8) believed that their partners disliked their redundant prepuce/phimosis. 20% (n = 42) had received doctors’ advice to undergo circumcision.

Conclusion

Knowledge about the foreskin was low among Chinese males. Our study elucidates the factors associated with WTC and suggests that more education of the population about the foreskin can help improve the recognition of a correctible abnormality and help patients assess the potential role of MC in their health.

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<![CDATA[Impact of sublethal exposure to a pyrethroid-neonicotinoid insecticide on mating, fecundity and development in the bed bug Cimex lectularius L. (Hemiptera: Cimicidae)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5aab0ee8fa60bdf6a0

Sublethal exposure to an insecticide may alter insect feeding, mating, oviposition, fecundity, development, and many other life history parameters. Such effects may have population-level consequences that are not apparent in traditional dose-mortality evaluations. Earlier, we found that a routinely used combination insecticide that includes a pyrethroid and a neonicotinoid (Temprid® SC) had deleterious effects on multiple bed bug (Cimex lectularius, L.) behaviors. Here, we demonstrate that sublethal exposure impacts physiology and reproduction as well. We report that sublethal exposure to Temprid SC has variable aberrant effects on bed bugs depending on the strain, including: a reduction in male mating success and delayed oviposition by females. However, after sublethal exposure, egg hatch rate consistently declined in every strain tested, anywhere from 34%-73%. Conversely, impact on fifth instar eclosion time was not significant. While the strains that we tested varied in their respective magnitude of sublethal effects, taken together, these effects could reduce bed bug population growth. These changes in bed bug behavior and fecundity could lead to improved efficacy of Temprid SC in the field, but recovery of impacted bugs must be considered in future studies. Sublethal effects should not be overlooked when evaluating insecticide efficacy, as it is likely that other products may also have indirect effects on population dynamics that could either aid or inhibit successful management of pest populations.

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<![CDATA[Homosexual Behavior in Female Mountain Gorillas: Reflection of Dominance, Affiliation, Reconciliation or Arousal?]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9e7ab0ee8fa60b6bba4

Humans are unique among primates for not only engaging in same-sex sexual acts, but also forming homosexual pair bonds. To shed light on the evolutionary origins of homosexuality, data on the occurrence and contexts of same-sex behavior from nonhuman primates may be of particular significance. Homosexual behavior involving females is poorly researched in most primate taxa, exceptions being Japanese macaques, rhesus macaques, Hanuman langurs and bonobos. We present data on homosexual behavior in female mountain gorillas in the Virunga Volcanoes (Rwanda) and test four functional hypotheses, namely reconciliation, affiliation, dominance expression and sexual arousal. Homosexual interactions between females involved both ventro-dorsal and ventro-ventral copulations accompanied by vocalizations and courtship displays. The only sociosexual hypothesis that received partial empirical support is the social status hypothesis, i.e., that mounting reaffirms the dominance hierarchy. There is also some limited evidence that same-sex behavior reflects an overall state of arousal or is triggered via a ‘pornographic’ effect. An adaptive function of female homosexual behavior is not readily apparent, and we tentatively conclude (until a more rigorous test becomes available) that it may simply be related to sexual gratification or that it is an evolutionary by-product of an adaptation.

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<![CDATA[Coy Males and Seductive Females in the Sexually Cannibalistic Colonial Spider, Cyrtophora citricola]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da4cab0ee8fa60b8ce97

The abundance of sperm relative to eggs selects for males that maximize their number of mates and for females that choose high quality males. However, in many species, males exercise mate choice, even when they invest little in their offspring. Sexual cannibalism may promote male choosiness by limiting the number of females a male can inseminate and by biasing the sex ratio toward females because, while females can reenter the mating pool, cannibalized males cannot. These effects may be insufficient for male choosiness to evolve, however, if males face low sequential encounter rates with females. We hypothesized that sexual cannibalism should facilitate the evolution of male choosiness in group living species because a male is likely to encounter multiple receptive females simultaneously. We tested this hypothesis in a colonial orb-weaving spider, Cyrtophora citricola, with a high rate of sexual cannibalism. We tested whether mated females would mate with multiple males, and thereby shift the operational sex ratio toward females. We also investigated whether either sex chooses mates based on nutritional state and age, and whether males choose females based on reproductive state. We found that females are readily polyandrous and exhibit no mate choice related to male feeding or age. Males courted more often when the male was older and the female was younger, and males copulated more often with well-fed females. The data show that males are choosier than females for the traits we measured, supporting our hypothesis that group living and sexual cannibalism may together promote the evolution of male mate choice.

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<![CDATA[How Relevant Is Sexual Transmission of Zika Virus?]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9dbab0ee8fa60b67c01

Christian Althaus and Nicola Low reflect on the contribution of sexual transmission to the spread of Zika virus.

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<![CDATA[Factors associated with post-diagnosis pregnancies in women living with HIV in the south of Brazil]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db4fab0ee8fa60bdbb82

Objectives

To analyze the factors associated with the occurrence of pregnancies after the diagnosis of infection by HIV.

Methods

Cross-sectional study with women of a reproductive age living with HIV/AIDS cared for in the public services of the city of Porto Alegre, in southern Brazil. The data was analyzed from a comparison between two groups: women with and women without pregnancies after the diagnosis of HIV. Poisson regression models were used to estimate the reasons of prevalence (RP).

Results

The occurrence of pregnancies after the diagnosis of HIV is associated with a lower level of education (RP adjusted = 1.31; IC95%: 1.03–1.66), non-use of condoms in the first sexual intercourse (RP = 1.32; IC95%: 1.02–1.70), being 20 years old or less when diagnosed with HIV (RP = 3.48; IC95%: 2.02–6.01), and experience of violence related to the diagnosis of HIV (RP = 1.28; IC95%: 1.06–1.56).

Conclusions

The occurrence of pregnancies after the diagnosis of infection by HIV does not indicate the exercise of the reproductive rights of the women living with HIV/AIDS because these pregnancies occurred in contexts of great vulnerability.

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<![CDATA[Associations between Forced Sexual Initiation, HIV Status, Sexual Risk Behavior, Life Stressors, and Coping Strategies among Adolescents in Nigeria]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dae4ab0ee8fa60bbcda2

Objectives

Some individuals experience their first sexual intercourse through physically forced sex, which affects the way they experience and cope with stress. We examined differences in sexual risk behavior, experience of stressors, and use of stress-coping strategies among adolescents in Nigeria based on their history of forced sexual initiation and HIV status.

Methods

We analyzed data from 436 sexually active 10–19-year-old adolescents recruited through a population-based survey from 12 Nigerian states. Using Lazarus and Folkman’s conceptual framework of stress and coping, we assessed if adolescents who reported forced sexual initiation were more likely to report HIV sexual risk practices, to report as stressors events related to social expectations, medical care and body images, and loss and grief, and to use more avoidance than adaptive coping strategies to manage stress. We also assessed if HIV status affected experience of stressors and use of coping strategies.

Results

Eighty-one adolescents (18.6%) reported a history of forced sexual initiation; these participants were significantly more likely to report anal sex practices (OR: 5.04; 95% CI: 2.14–11.87), and transactional sex (OR: 2.80; 95% CI: 1.56–4.95). Adolescents with no history of forced sexual initiation were more likely to identify as stressors, life events related to social expectations (OR: 1.03; 95% CI: 0.96–1.11) and loss and grief (OR: 1.34; 95% CI: 0.73–2.65), but not those related to medical care and body images (OR: 0.63; 95% CI: 0.34–1.18). They were also more likely to use adaptive responses (OR: 1.48; 95% CI: 0.62–3.50) than avoidance responses (OR: 0.90; 95% CI: 0.49–1.64) to cope with stress, though these differences were not significant. More adolescents with a history of forced sexual initiation who were HIV positive identified as stressors, life events related to medical care and body images (p = 0.03) and loss and grief (p = 0.009). Adolescents reporting forced sexual initiation and HIV-negative status were significantly less likely to use religion as a coping strategy (OR: 0.28; 95% CI: 0.09–0.83).

Conclusion

History of forced sexual initiation and HIV status affected perception of events as stressors and use of specific coping strategies. Our study findings could inform best practice interventions and policies to prevent and address forced sexual initiation among adolescents in Nigeria and other countries.

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<![CDATA[Will Gay Sex–Seeking Mobile Phone Applications Facilitate Group Sex? A Cross-Sectional Online Survey among Men Who Have Sex with Men in China]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dadbab0ee8fa60bb9b6f

Introduction

China is amidst a sexual revolution, with changing sexual practices and behaviors. Sex–seeking mobile phone applications (gay apps) that allow multiple people to meet up quickly may facilitate group sex. This study was therefore undertaken to evaluate group sex among Chinese MSM and to better understand factors associated with group sex.

Methods

An online survey was conducted from September-October 2014, collecting data on socio-demographics, sexual behaviors, use of gay apps and occurrence of group sex among Chinese MSM. Univariate and multivariable logistic regressions were used to compare group sex and non-group sex participants.

Results

Of the 1,424 MSM, the majority were under 30 years old (77.5%), unmarried (83.9%), and were gay apps users (57.9%). Overall, 141 (9.9%) participants engaged in group sex in the last 12 months. Multivariate analyses showed that men living with HIV, engaged in condomless anal intercourse with men, and used gay apps were more likely to engage in group sex, with adjusted ORs of 3.74 (95% CI 1.92–7.28), 2.88 (95% CI 2.00–4.16) and 1.46 (95% CI: 1.00–2.13), respectively. Among gay app users, the likelihood of group sex increases with the number of sex partners and the number of sex acts with partners met through a gay app.

Conclusions

Chinese MSM who engage in group sex are also more likely to engage in other risky sexual behaviors, and gay app use may facilitate group sex. Further research is needed among MSM who engage in group sex in order to target interventions and surveillance.

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<![CDATA[Early Resumption of Sex following Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision amongst School-Going Males]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da27ab0ee8fa60b81034

Voluntary medical male circumcision is an integral part of the South African government’s response to the HIV and AIDS epidemic. Following circumcision, it is recommended that patients abstain from sexual activity for six weeks, as sex may increase the risk of female-to-male HIV transmission and prolong the healing period. This paper investigates the resumption of sexual activity during the healing period among a cohort of school-going males in the KwaZulu-Natal province of South Africa. The analysis for this paper compares two groups of sexually active school-going males: the first group reported having sex during the healing period (n = 40) and the second group (n = 98) reported no sex during the healing period (mean age: 17.7, SD: 1.7).The results show that 29% (n = 40) of young males (mean age: 17.9, SD: 1.8) who were previously sexually active, resumed sexual activity during the healing period, had on average two partners and used condoms inconsistently. In addition, those males that engage in sexual activity during the healing period were less inclined to practice safe sex in the future (AOR = 0.055, p = 0.002) than the group of males who reported no sex during the healing period. These findings suggest that a significant proportion of young males may currently and in the future, subject themselves to high levels of risk for contracting HIV post circumcision. Education, as part of a VMMC campaign, must emphasize the high risk of HIV transmission for both the males their partners during the healing period.

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