Background MSM populations in Vietnam are faced with a rapidly growing HIV epidemic, yet little is known about STIs epidemic in this diverse population. This study describes prevalence of Gonorrhea, HPV among male sex workers, and key correlates in three major cities.
Method Cross-sectional surveys from 2009 to 2011 used Time-Location-Sampling to recruit eligible participants. Eligibility criteria included being biological male at birth; self-report of having sex with a male partner in exchange for material rewards within the last 90 days; and age from 16 to 35. Blood samples were taken for HIV testing; pharyngeal, anal and urethral swabs for gonorrhoea and HPV.
Results Of 710 participants, 4.2% was HIV positive. Testing for gonorrhoea and HPV showed high prevalence of 28.8% and 33.2% respectively. Pharyngeal test for gonorrhoea (23.7%) and anal test for HPV (26.1%) were highest among swapping sites. The rates of infection were particularly higher in Ho Chi Minh City (largest economic city) as compared to Hanoi (political capital) and Nha Trang (major beach city). Odds ratio controlling for cities showed that testing positive for gonorrhoea was associated with engaging in oral sex past 30 days (ORM-H = 4.33; CI = 1.3 – 14.4); having receptive anal sex with more than three clients past 30 days (ORM-H = 2.03; CI = 1.18 – 3.51). HPV infection was associated with engaging in sex work for more than two years (ORM-H = 1.6; CI = 1.09 – 2.34); having receptive anal sex past 30 days (ORM-H = 1.95; CI = 1.35 – 2.83); having oral sex with more than four clients past 30 days (ORM-H = 1.63; CI = 1.12 – 2.39).
Conclusion The unprecedented high prevalence of pharyngeal Gonorrhea and anal HPV among MSW is significant given the high HIV prevalence among a relatively young population. Appropriate STIs is important in addressing the twin epidemics among MSM in Vietnam.
- Male sex workers
- sexually transmitted infections
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